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The first three weeks of the meteorological spring have been mild. The Central England Temperature (CET) for March is provisionally 7.8C to the 21st. That is 2.4C above the 30 year average. The rest of the month looks set to bring further settled weather and after a cooler blip it probably warms up. So at the present time it seems as though March will turn out to be significantly warmer than average. Will the warmth continue through the rest of the spring and into the early part of summer?
A number of seasonal computer models point to warmer than average conditions during April, May and June. It is worth remembering that in the UK the skill level of long range models remains low. In part it is because small adjustments to global pressure patterns make a big difference to the weather we experience.
The C3S multi-system plot below uses data from European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts, the UK Met Office, Meteo France, Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici and DWD (the German Met Office). It shows the forecast temperature anomaly for April, May and June.
The yellows and oranges covering most of Europe indicate a forecast temperature anomaly of between 0.2C and 2C. The anomaly is lowest in Ireland and highest in Scandinavia. One of the notable features of summer 2018 was the warmth in Scandinavia during the early part of the season, so there could be some similarities beginning to develop this year. Nonetheless it is far too early to make confident predictions.
The signal for precipitation is less clear cut. The C3S is currently showing no major anomaly during this period. However the UK Met Office model taken on its own favours below average rainfall levels.
Temperatures during the early part of spring have often been above average in much of the UK. Settled and at times rather warm conditions are forecast to continue through the rest of March. In the longer term computer models are suggesting the possibility of significantly warmer than average weather in the UK and continental Europe during April, May and June.
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