October 2001

(all temperatures in degrees Celsius; all averages 1961 – 1990)

Mean daily maximum: 15.8
Difference from average: +2.6

Mean daily minimum: 9.9
Difference from average: +2.6

Mean air temperature: 12.9
Difference from average: +3.0

Absolute maximum: 19.7 (13th)

Absolute minimum: 5.2 (19th)

Mean grass minimum: 8.2

Absolute grass minimum: 1.7 (28th)

Number of ground frosts: 0

Mean soil temperature at 30cm depth: 12.7

Mean soil temperature at 100cm depth: 13.9

(all totals in millimetres; all averages 1961 – 1990)

Total for the month: 51.5
Difference from average: -1.0

Percentage of the average: 98%

3-month total rainfall to 31st October: 150.4
Difference from average: -10

6-month rainfall total to 31st October: 239.2
Difference from average: -91.8

12-month rainfall total to 31st October: 714
Difference from average: +65

(Averages for 09:00 hours GMT)

Relative Humidity: 82.8%

(all averages 1961 – 1990)

Total for the month: 81.8 hours
Difference from average: -11.3

Percentage of the average: 89%

Mean daily sunshine: 2.6 hours
Difference from average: -0.4

Sunniest day: 7.3 hours (31st)

Number of days with no recorded sunshine: 5

Cumulative total sunshine since 1st January: 1141 hours

Difference from average: -76.6


The mean wind speed: 16km/h [8.6kt]
Difference from average: +4.0km/hr

The highest gust: 81.4km/h [44kt] from 241o at 23:50 GMT on 1st


Comments on October 2001
October was a remarkably warm month, certainly the warmest in Durham since records began in 1850. The previous warmest October was in 1969 but that was a massive 0.7°C cooler than October 2001! This continues an interesting trend in that October has showed a greater warming trend than most other months throughout the 20th century. As expected, both maximum and minimum air temperatures were well above average, and there were no ground or air frosts.

Alas, our automatic raingauge was again not functional during October so the rainfall data reported here are based on figures supplied by the Environment Agency for the nearby Barker Heugh gauge. Rainfall was more or less exactly average for the month.

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University