January 2004

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

Mean daily maximum: 7.4
Difference from average: +1.4

Mean daily minimum: 2.4
Difference from average: +2.2

Mean air temperature: 4.9
Difference from average: +1.9

Absolute maximum: 12.8 (20th)

Absolute minimum: -5.9 (1st)

Mean grass minimum: 0.7

Absolute grass minimum: -4.4 (26th)

Number of ground frosts: 18

Number of air frosts: 7

Mean soil temperature at 30cm depth: 3.7

Mean soil temperature at 100cm depth: 5.9

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

Total for the month: 84.4
Difference from average: +25.4

Percentage of the average: 143%

Wettest day: 12.4 (16th)

Number of rain days (>0.25mm): 22

Number of wet days (=> 1mm): 18

3-month total rainfall to 31st January: 168.8
Difference from average: -9.7

6-month rainfall total to 31st January: 263.6
Difference from average: -89.8

12-month rainfall total to 31st January: 430.2
Difference from average: -218.8

(Averages for 09:00 hours GMT)

Relative Humidity: 85.7%

(all averages 1961 – 1990)

Total for the month: 46 hours
Difference from average: -7.8

Percentage of the average: 85%

Mean daily sunshine: 1.5 hours
Difference from average: -0.2

Sunniest day: 6.4 hours (24th)

Number of days with no recorded sunshine: 10


The mean wind speed: 14.6km/h [7.9kt]
Difference from average: -0.1km/hr

The highest gust: 83.3km/h [45kt] from 283° at 14:42 GMT on 19th


Comments on January 2004
Despite two short spells of old-fashioned wintry weather, January was as a whole very mild, the 15th warmest on record. Both day – time and night – time temperatures were well above average.

Rainfall was well above average too, by exactly one inch (25.4 mm)! The three-month total is now close to average but the 6 – month total remains well below average, while the 12 – month total remains exceptionally low. The 12 – month total to 31st January 2004 is the 25th lowest in a series of over 1800 values.

Both sunshine and wind speed were a little below average.

Professor Tim Burt
Department of Geography
Durham University