It’s been a mild, wet and windy winter

Flooded fields near Denford on February 16
Flooded fields near Denford on February 16

February was mild, wet and very windy according to statistics collected by Pitsford weather station.

The weather so far this winter has reversed the trend of the past few winters, although rainfall amounts have come in at 227.3mm across the three months December, January and February, nearly 50 per cent more than usual. However, this does not beat the winter of 1989-90, which saw 250.1mm, or the wettest winter on record back in 1899 to 1900 which saw 273.4mm. Obviously the county has escaped lightly compared to other parts of the country like Somerset.

The average temperature across the winter was 5.8C. Definitely mild, but not as mild as the winter of 2006-7 or many of the winters in the 1990s. However, the notable feature of the winter has been the lack of air frosts. Only five were recorded - four in January, and one on the last day of February. Snow has fallen only twice, and did not settle on the ground: the first occasion since Pitsford weather station was established in 1998 that the winter has been 100 per cent “green”.

The highest air temperature was recorded on the 20th, when it reached 12.1C, the lowest on the 10th when it dropped to 0.6C. The total rainfall for February was 58.5mm, which is 142 per cent of the monthly mean. The 6th saw the most rain, with 21.1mm falling. By February 7, Pitsford had recorded 65.5 per cent of the normal monthly rainfall for the month.

The following day, the Enviroment Agency had issued a flood alert for the River Nene at Billing Aquadrome and nearby business parks including the Riverside Business Park and Crow Lane Industrial Estate. The agency also had a flood warning for low-lying undefended areas of the River Nene between Daventry and Billing. By Valentine’s Day, the recorded rainfall was 46.7mm, more than forecasters would expect to see in the whole of February.

The month saw 67.1 hours of sunshine, with the 16th being the sunniest days, and there were six days with no sunshine.

The strongest wind was recorded on the 8th, with a gust of 62mph.