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Suffolk on course for the sunniest spring on record according to the Met Office




Suffolk looks to be on course for the sunniest spring in more than 90 years.

With blue skies and temperatures in the low to mid-20s set to remain for the rest of the week, it appears this year will be the best since records began way back in 1929.

According to the Met Office, we have enjoyed more than 642 hours of sunshine in the last three months - that's 34 per cent above average.

Suffolk looks to be on course for the sunniest spring in more than 90 years.
Suffolk looks to be on course for the sunniest spring in more than 90 years.

And with the season not ending until Sunday, the last day of May, it looks like the record set in 1990 will be beaten.

Just over 30 years ago, 668.9 hours of sunshine was recorded in the county, and 2020 has already surpassed the second best year which was 1948 when we basked in 616 hours of sunshine.

Forecasters says it's all down to high pressure which has been a dominant weather feature for much of the spring period, leading to long spells of dry and settled weather for most of the country.

That good weather will continue for the rest of this week and over the weekend.

While the dry and bright conditions have probably been welcomed by parents with children off school during lockdown, it might not have been such good news for gardeners looking to maintain their spring blooms.

Rainfall levels are significantly down on what's normally expected for this time of year.

Since the start of March, Suffolk has only had 41% of the average rainfall we would normally get during the season with a mere 54.9mm.

But that's nowhere near as dry as it has been in the past - the driest spring was in 2011 when only 24.5mm of rain fell in the county.

While the good weather has enabled us to get out for our daily exercise, it has also led to many heading to the coast in recent days and causing concerns over rubbish and breaking social distancing guidelines.

With spring ending this weekend it looks like the summer will get off to just as bright a start, but the occasional thunderstorm can't be ruled out.

A long range forecast from the Met Office suggests the south east of England will continue to enjoy more warm temperatures throughout June with any cloud and rain being confined to the north of the country.

The top 5 driest May on record (records dating back to 1862) for Suffolk are as follows:

  • 1989 when 5.9mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1959 when 9.4mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1980 when 10.7mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1896 when 11.7mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1919 when 12.1mm of rainfall was recorded

The top 5 driest Spring on record (records dating back to 1862) for Suffolk are as follows:

  • 2011 when 24.5mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1996 when 43.1mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1893 when 48.2mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1974 when 51.8mm of rainfall was recorded
  • 1976 when 57.2mm of rainfall was recorded

The top 5 sunniest May on record (records dating back to 1929) for Suffolk are as follows:

  • 1989 when 316.9 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 1992 when 274.1 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 1943 when 271.1 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 1990 when 268.9 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 2018 when 259.1 hours of sunshine was recorded

The top 5 sunniest Spring on record (records dating back to 1929) for Suffolk are as follows:

  • 1990 when 668.9 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 1948 when 616 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 1982 when 589.7 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 1995 when 588.3 hours of sunshine was recorded
  • 1943 when 586.4 hours of sunshine was recorded