May 2018

May Day dawned bright but cold, with a late ground frost down to 2.0°C, the coldest night of the month. The sunny day soon warmed up, reaching 14.7°C. However, the barometer fell sharply overnight bringing 5.4mm rain. Once it had passed high pressure returned and dominated for the rest of the month.

The following days were settled, with long sunny spells. The temperature steadily rose to 24.1°C on 6th and a maximum of 26.7°C on 7th, just over 80F, a record for the early May Bank Holiday. From then on, days were sunny with light winds from a north easterly quarter. Daily temperatures ranged mostly from high teens to low twenties, the lowest being 15.7°C on 12th. Night minima steadily increased from a low of 4.4°C on 3rd to 15.0°C on 28th. For the last ten days it remained in double figures.

Apart from 3.1mm rain on 12th and a brief shower on 21st there was no more rain between 3rd and 22nd, the total so far being just 8.8mm. Although the wind had been mainly light and from the north-east, wetter air originating from the Atlantic brought 6.0mm on 23rd. Some rain fell on every day to the end of the month except 25th and 28th. However, quantities were small until 29th with 15.9mm and 30th/31st with a total of 21.9mm. The 31st brought downpours accompanied by much thunder and lightning. The total for the month was 61.3mm, just 2% above average for May.

With the two preceding months having been wet the Spring total was 38% above average.

It was a real Spring May with warm days and plenty of sunshine. Even the last, wetter spell was warm, resulting in a month fully 2°C above average.

Mike Wilkins

25 year Rainfall averages are from 1992-2016
30 year Temperature averages are from 1981-2010