Met Office in the Media: 09 May 2011

A story about the  forecast for the Royal Wedding provided by the Met Office was published by the Sunday Express this weekend.  The story, however, fails to accurately review the forecast that was actually provided for the wedding, and as a result is misleading.

Our forecasts were used by millions of people in London and across the country to help celebrate the big day, providing accurate information on sunny spells developing and the small risk of showers.

Reviewing the forecast we issued, it highlighted a very small risk of showers first thing followed by sunny spells developing through the morning. There was then the risk of further showers in the afternoon.  It is possible to review this forecast in a News Release issued on the Thursday before the wedding.

Looking back at the weather for the day then there were, as forecast, some showers first thing across parts of north and west London. These then cleared to allow sunny spells to develop.  Further showers, some of these heavy, then developed in the afternoon.

This maps below show radar rainfall maps for the 29th April. The first the rainfall radar at 1030 BST (0930 GMT).  It clearly shows showers to the north and west of London as well as showers across parts of northern England and Western Scotland. The second shows the rainfall radar at 1530 BST (1430 GMT).  Showers, some heavy (indicated by the brighter colours) have broken out to the north of London again and moved west to other parts of England.  Further showers affect parts of northern England and southern Scotland.

UK Rainfall Radar Image (29 April 1030 BST)

UK Rainfall Radar Image (29 April 1530 BST)

As predicted the ‘Spanish Plume’ widely talked about last week, brought warm conditions across the UK. Heavy thunderstorms were reported on both Friday and Saturday.  Many newspapers, including the Daily Mail reported on the welcome rain over the weekend.

Lastly the Sunday Telegraph reports on a new book that is to be published exploring the hidden beauty of clouds taken by satellites. The new book titled Weather Wonders will be published later this month in conjunction with the Met Office.

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