This week temperatures are forecast to reach 16 °C, the mildest of the year so far. This is unseasonably warm for February, which usually reaches highs of around 8 °C on average.
So is this the first sign of spring? Meteorologically speaking, no. For statistical purposes in meteorology, spring begins on the 1 March and ends on the 31 May. For many people though, spring begins on the date of the spring equinox, 20 March.
Although spring can be determined by calendar dates, the natural variability within the atmosphere means that, as far as the weather is concerned, year to year differences vary widely.
However, looking beyond the year to year differences we see that our climate is changing, records show spring has advanced 2-6 days per decade in the UK. Those with gardens need to start cutting their lawns almost two weeks earlier than they did in 2001.
Research undertaken by the Met Office Hadley Centre has also confirmed that the growing season of plants is likely to increase by around 40 days by 2080, due to the earlier start to spring and later end to autumn.
The mild but wet and windy weather is set to continue until the weekend, visit the website for your local forecast.