Weather Notes

The Year Without a Summer Part 2

"The year without a summer", 1816, believed to have been caused mainly by the huge eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonesia in 1815, saw the most unsettled weather, normally centred over the sub-Arctic region, shift further west and east to include the south Baltic area and England. Ireland experienced a very wet summer that year experienced 142 days of rain in the five months of May - September (153 days). The period often referred to as the "little ice-age" contained the three coolest summers for central England since records began in 1659; the year of 1695 experienced the coldest summer of the three with average summer temperatures in central England being only 13.1 C. and the next coldest was 1725 at 13.2C. whilst "the year without a summer" (1816) had a corresponding summer average temperature of 13.4 C. Long periods of rainfall and cold weather that summer caused many crop failures in western Britain. However as is usually the case, when unusually cold weather affects one area of the world, unusually hot or very hot conditions affect another part of the planet. This was the case in 1816 when central England had a dire summer, but northern Scotland and the Shetland Isles had a gloriously fine and warm one while in the (then) USSR, Ukraine also experienced a very hot summer.