IntroductionThe last really severe winter of the 20th Century occurred in 1978/79, and although not as cold as 1963 or as snowy as 1947, it was memorable none the less. Much of the UK experienced long cold spells with heavy snowfall. The other thing which makes 1979 special is that it was the first severe winter to occur in the UK after colour photography had become widespread and was recent enough for people in their 30s or older to remember. I can personally recall heavy snow that year, especially during the middle part of February. Although a number of cold winters followed in the 1980s, none of them could match 1979.
Winter 1979 overviewThe winter of 1978/79 was the third coldest of the 20th century. Although December 1978 had been a rather cold month, the coldest weather was reserved for January and February. Both months were very cold with widespread snowfall. Particularly cold conditions were recorded during the middle of February. The cold winter probably compounded the industrial unrest during what famously became known as the winter of discontent.
February 14th, 1979 – A bitterly cold easterly airstream brought snow to much of the UK
Photo provided by Adam RobinsonPhoto provided by Adam RobinsonPhoto provided by Adam RobinsonPhoto provided by David DawberSee more snow in 'Readers photos from the winters of 1979 - Part 2'
Sunny spells and showers
Winter sting in the tail?
Mid January update
Regularly updated discussion forecasts.
14 day outlook
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