BBC and Met Office: an enduring partnership

Today the BBC has stopped taking most of its weather information from the Met Office, here Phil Evans, our Chief Operating Officer gives his perspective

You will know us as the UK’s National Weather Service and also as the people behind the weather forecasts that feature on TV, online and on your phone – keeping you in touch with our ever changing weather. We are also trusted to help protect the Nation through our warnings of severe weather, our armed forces rely on us as they plan missions around the weather; and we help keep technology safe with our space weather forecasts. We support the economy and vital global transport networks. For example, we advise energy and retail sectors of weather that might affect consumer trends and help airlines reduce costs, and run safely and on schedule.

No one knows Britain’s weather better than the Met Office – the UK’s national weather service, official source of weather forecasts, warnings and statistics. Everything we do is based on world-leading science and enhanced by the close working relationships we have with partner organisations in the UK and around the globe. We collect and make sense of massive amounts of data every day, for the benefit of mankind – and our planet.

So it is not surprising that the public are puzzled and have asked us why the BBC have changed their supplier of weather information. This was a decision for the BBC to make and a question we can’t answer. Our work supporting businesses continually demonstrates that we provide value for money services with a real impact. Our technology is cutting edge – we have installed the world’s most powerful supercomputer dedicated to weather and climate on time and under budget. We are leaders in innovation just look at our stunning graphics package which drives our broadcasts and those of our partners on ITV, STV, Channel 5, UTV and S4C  

Some have also asked what will happen to our popular weather presenters and it comes as no surprise to me that the BBC have adopted them as their own. Our Met Office college trains meteorologists and presenters from all over the world and ensures a talent pipeline for our own and partner channels into the future.

Now, up to the minute weather information is available through a huge diversity of channels – TV and radio, online, through smart phone apps and in print media. The public should be reassured that the Met Office and its partners will be providing its trusted weather information through all of these channels, while the UK’s official National Severe Weather Warnings will continue to be seen and heard on the BBC. So our partnership continues. To be sure you are viewing an official forecast from the trusted source in UK weather, just look for the Met Office name and logo.

I’d like to offer the BBC and MeteoGroup our best wishes with their new partnership. Everyone can be assured that, as the home of weather in the UK, the Met Office will continue to provide the public and our partners around the world with our forecasts, warnings and advice wherever they are, at the touch of a button, click of a mouse or the tap or swipe of a fingertip. You can receive our video forecasts and weather news direct from the Met Office studios on our YouTube channel as well as on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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14 Responses to BBC and Met Office: an enduring partnership

  1. Ian Sproxton says:

    Very disappointed that the BBC has chosen another forecaster over the Met Office.

  2. clairedavey says:

    This I agree is baffling to why they change in such a rational and disappointing way. Everyone knows how reliable the met office is. I stick to the met office app here.

  3. Well, I for one will be continuing to use the Met Office as my preferred forecaster.

  4. David Porter says:

    I can only assume that,as usual, shortterm monetary expediency is the reason for this inexplicable change. I agree with clairedavey that the way forwards is to use the met office app.

  5. We should be provided with an explanation into choosing another provider of weather information over the Met Office as we as the public pay for the BBC Service. I have no idea why they would change when as the Met say they are cutting edge and have the most up to data equipment and computer system.

  6. It’s a shame that that a long-term campaign by some news outlets such as the Daily Mail to rubbish the Met Office may have contributed to this change. In case you don’t know, the Daily Mail is a major shareholder in the Press Association, which is in turn a major shareholder in MeteoGroup, which has replaced the Met Office in the BBC’s affections.
    The Mail has also had a major influence on government policy, a government which has ruled that the output of the Met Office computer (which we as taxpayers have paid to produce) can be taken by a privately-owned third party and used to undercut the MO for profit.
    Corruption, dirty dealing, or fair, open competition? You decide.

  7. Agree with the above. This should not have been an ‘under the radar’ deal from a public service broadcaster! Wishing the Met Office longevity and all future success.

  8. It is a shame that this long running link with the BBC has been broken, presumably because of financial reasons.

    That means if we want a Met office forecast easily it needs to be via your app for mobiles and tablets.

    It used to be very good and intuitive. Now it is so bad we have had to delete it.

    Why the changes and don’t you think the negative reaction to it and its poor rating means you need to go back to the drawing board?

    After all, with the demise of the BBC contract presumably your mobile app will become an increasingly important way of reaching your customers.


    • Hello Tony

      Thanks for your comments.

      I’m not sure how recently you last used our app but it’s always evolving and is very popular, having been downloaded more than 4.5 million times and currently rated 4.5* on IOS and 4.4* on Android.

      It has evolved iteratively based on user feedback and usage. We read every user review and prioritise changes and updates based on thorough analysis of that feedback, analytics, user research and testing. Based on this we have:

      – Added the ability to switch between an hourly or 5 day view on the first screen
      – Added a surface pressure map
      – Added a UK wide view of warnings so that users could see National Severe Weather Warnings on a map across the whole of the UK, rather than just for their saved locations
      – Made a tablet version and in a landscape view, which is perfect for viewing the video forecast.

      If you haven’t used the app recently then please give it another go, and if you have any feedback let us know and we will consider how we can further improve the app.


  9. nuwurld says:

    Makes absolute perfect sense to move operations to Europe given a recent decision to cut ties with Europe.
    This totally epitomises the fact that as attempting to gain some independence and control we are perpetually undermined by the fact that we have already lost it.
    Absolutely gutted by this level of almost treasonable level of stupidity and lack of allegiance.

  10. Watched the weather forecast on North West tonight and they now no longer cover the Isle of Man!

  11. The new forecasts appear a lot more general. Britain is shown against a map that takes in virtually the whole of Europe and even the more detailed map is very small and hard to see. 3 out of 10 so far but no doubt they will refine it over the next few weeks as more people comment


  12. Paul White says:

    I have used meteo forecasts for a few years. They are consistently better than the Met Office.

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