The UK Met Office "Winter Forecast" – fail or faux?

Have a look at these two juxtaposed news clips from the UK Daily Mail, one from October 28th, 2010, the other from November 28th, 2010.

click for news article

and here’s today’s news:

click for news article

Now have a look at what the Met Office issued on 10-28-2010:

click for original article

That missive comes from this page where they gave up on seasonal outlooks, but they don’t actually tell you where you can find the “monthly outlook” forecast.

A search for “monthly outlook” yields nothing, pretty lame. But, there are some suggestions it may be a paid service.

Anybody know where to find it?

In other news, new records have been set.

Big chill breaks November temperature records

28 November 2010

Snowy road

Last night saw November minimum temperature records fall across the country.  Most notably both Wales and Northern Ireland recorded the coldest November night since records began. In Wales, temperatures fell to -18.0 °C at Llysdinam, near Llandrindod Wells, Powys. Northern Ireland recorded -9.5 °C at Loch Fea.

Scotland recorded minimum temperature of -15.3 °C at Loch Glascarnoch, whilst England recorded -13.5 °C at Topcliffe in North Yorkshire.

The UK’s lowest ever recorded temperature in November was – 23.3 °C recorded in Braemar, in the Scottish Highlands, on November 14, 1919.

The cold and snow is expected to continue to affect many parts of the UK today and through the coming week. Met Office forecasters are warning of further severe frosts, snow and icy conditions. The north-easterly winds, with a significant wind chill will also make it feel bitterly cold as daytime temperatures struggle to rise above freezing.

Met Office warnings and advisories of severe weather for snow and icy roads are in force for parts of northern and eastern England, parts of Scotland and Northern Ireland. Further snowfall is expected through Scotland and the north east on Sunday.

Met Office Chief Forecaster, Steve Willington said: “The very low overnight temperatures we have seen are likely to be repeated through the coming week as the cold and snowy weather continues. As winds increase into next week, it will feel increasingly cold with a significant wind chill to contend with by day and night.”

“Icy roads and snow will be a risk for many, and the public are advised to stay up to date with the forecast to make sure they have the latest information.”


newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Richard Sharpe

Well, it’s all Globull Warming’s fault, isn’t it. See, Globull Warming caused snow storms and freezing temperatures. Simple, really. Actually, it’s really the fault of CO2. Shut down those coal-fired power stations and you will get warm winters. Simple, really.

Layne Blanchard

Ahhhhh, the bitter chill of defeat. Couldn’t come at a better time. Let me see, it still isn’t WINTER yet, is it?


I suspect the monthly forecast refers to this
It’s updated at least daily, probably twice, so there’s no record (unless somebody saves it) of what predictions they made a month ago.


yep – they finally admit defeat! LOL
however, I remember this press release where, surprise surprise, they are singing their own praises!
I can think of a few choice expletives to describe my contempt and level of respect for these comedians – but I’ll leave that to WUWT readers imagination….


The poor Met office boys and girls must be all confused… why do they *never* get it right? Kids – when the weather always does the opposite of what your saying, just invert your forecast and you’ll be right every time… OTOH, this might confuse the British public, as they are already used to doing the opposite of what the Met Office recommends.

stephen richards

Are you suggesting that the Met Office cannot accurately forecast the weather?
Well I never!

Ian Mc Vindicated

Heat spell… warming
Cold spell…global warming
Drought….global warming
Flood ….global warming
heavy rain….global warming
normal weather…….global warming
I give up….to me it is all just weather and climate..or in Canada , we call them seasons…this is getting pathetic.
I am ready to give up and say and do nothing….but Iwon’t…..these lies have to stop.


and just so some of non-UK folk can see the **** we have to put up with – this is from the BBC earlier this year

Dr T G Watkins

In Wales, the relatively warm and wet western part of the UK, we are not used to these very cold temps. Grid-lock around Cardiff on Friday night.
As so often happens in really cold weather here, we have barely a breath of wind and a wind- farm visible from my home shows no activity for three days.The spirit of Cervantes lives on.
Please o please can a politician or ‘researcher’ read or research the abundant literature dealing with the real drivers of climate and reverse the suicidal energy policies advocated by the Huhnians ( sounds Swiftian – Gulliver’s Travels ) and other scientifically ignorant members of our Coalition.

Well we’re certainly having some fun in the snow. Actully it is not just in UK that there is controversy over the forecast of a mild winter. Having looked at the Scandinavian press there are several different opinons there too:
Not only that but the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), funded by 33 countries, is located just outside London. The UK contribution is 16% of the £37M for 2010. That is where the ensemble models for the Norwegian forecast originated. There should be no shortage of forecasting power in Britain.

Stephen Brown

I don’t have to be told how wrong the MET is, I’m living in the coldest weather it has ever been in my part of the south coast of England, supposedly immune to the harsher weather experienced further north.
It’s now 22:00 BWT (British Winter Time) and the snow outside has developed an icy cap, making walking difficult, and I’m not going to go out to try and read the thermometer at the end of my garden!
Fortunately I read Piers Corbyn’s forecasts and I have prepared.
Unfortunately I cannot afford to pay the newly-imposed increases in my energy bills, both electricity and gas, which have been Government-mandated in order to pay for all of the windmills that Huhne thinks will provide me with electricity.
I’ve spent three months amassing a huge pile of (free!) logs, now all split and cut to size. The fireplace in the lounge has never been so inviting!
I’m paying for the electricity but the gas-fired central heating is off right now. We’re re-learning how to go to bed in cold bedrooms with hot-water bottles filled from kettles boiled over the hob I installed in the lounge fireplace last year. The oven which came with the hob makes the world’s best stews when they’ve simmered for 18 hours!
On a more serious note, we are now preparing, at some expense, for similar or more extreme winters in the following years.

stephen richards

Its’ next week that the worst may arrive. I have seen forecast of 30 mph winds with 0°c at max temp. That would be a massive wind chill for Nov and the worst in my lifetime of 60 years. That’s my memorable lifetime. 1962/3 the nov-Dec period was exceptionally cold with strong winds and 1°C max for a week which was followed bya blizzard in London on Boxing day 26 dec. Never have I seen 0°C with 30mph. Nov-Dec 1962 also produced fog. Thick freezing fog. So bad that, as the apprentice, I had to walk back to the depot in front of the lorry. Max temp was -1°C but no wind of course.


Whilst we’re busy criticising the Met Office, the graphics they provide to the BBC (and others), showing the UK as essentially a brown desert, is just a further subtle bit of propaganda. Whenever I’ve flown over the UK in an aircraft, it’s always looked very, very green.

stephen richards

Monthly forecast is updated every Monday.

Tony Leatham

I seem to remember EXACTLY the same sequence of events last Winter – Met Office said “warm winter coming” and we got the coldest winter for 30 years.
But wait, I’m forgetting, the same Met Office also believe that 2010 was the warmest year ever……..

stephen richards

Don’t crow too much, Joe B is forecasting an overall above average temp winter and has some pretty good reasons for so doing.


TinyCO2 says:
November 28, 2010 at 1:46 pm
well, they did suggest a mild winter (again) according to this article from October – but it could be journalistic enhancement too!

Henry chance

Before last Christmas, Joe Bastardi said a huge blizzard is on the way. The Met office said not so. After the cold and snow had arrived, the Met Office updated their forcast. They are a waste of time and money.

Anything is possible

A search for “monthly outlook” yields nothing, prettt lame. But there are some suggestions it may be a paid service.
The Met Office do a 16-30 day outlook, which can be found on their main UK weather page here :
Looks like a monthly outlook in all but name to me.
On a broader note, when I was growing up, the Met Office had a deserved reputation as being at the forefront of worldwide weather prediction, but in between their failure to properly forecast the great storm of October 1987, and embracing the more extreme end of AGW predictions, they have almost become a laughing stock.
Pretty sad, really.


Ah, the poor Brits. All that money and nothing to show for it. Is that the only game in town, and they gave up?
I’m pretty satisfied with the weather forecasting for my neck of the woods – Midwestern U.S.
Weather forecasting is a competitive business around here because good weather forecasting brings eyeballs to a TV station and listeners to a radio station. Many people select their favorite stations based on their perception of the quality of weather forecasting.
I’d like to see some comments from the Brits as to what they use for an alternative source to the Met Office forecasts. I’d be curious if people elsewhere around the globe are satisfied with their source of weather forecasts.

Troels Halken

DMI forecasts a winter 0,8 above the 30 year running normal for Denmark.

David, UK

A sadly misguided and zealous Green friend of mine told me the other day that the cold is due to the slowing down of the Gulf stream, due to Global Warming Climate Change Global Climate Disruption (ok, that was cheap, but they make it too easy – to be fair she actually just called it “climate change”). When I pointed out how convenient it is that one can have it both ways – i.e. if it gets hotter it’s proof of AGW, if it gets colder it’s proof of – err – AGW – she glazed over. It was then that I diplomatically changed the subject.
Familiar scenario, people?

In our news, “climate scientist” Mark New from Oxford University predicts 4C warming. MetOffice says it will happen until 2050.
In those good old times of Huckleberry Finn, those charlatans would be tarred and feathered.


Warmist-based weather forecasting reminds me of the guy who continues to double his bet at roulette, figuring Red has to come up sooner or later and he’ll recoup his losses. At least the roulette nutter is betting his own money.


Given that the Met office has meant to predict things correctly, and how they meant to really temper their Global Warming outlook, and how they meant to not inject politics into forecasting, I hereby suggest they change their name to…
The Meant Office.


Clive Crook(sic) has the answer to …. something.
“Stop talking and start taxing carbon
By Clive Crook”
(That’s all one can put up, says FT: “Please don’t cut articles from and redistribute by email or post to the web.”)


CO2 should be blamed for Met’s Office inaccuracy …

Al Gored

On the BBC website homepage, on their London weather forecast, they used to say “in Association with the MET.”
Yesterday, visiting there for the first time in a long time, I noticed that it only read “In Association With.”
Today it doesn’t even say that. So when even the UK’s Pravda is backing away from these clowns, you know that things are “worse than we thought.”
Amazing how far down the tubes the UK has fallen…

RE: That missive comes from this page where they gave up on seasonal outlooks, but they don’t actually tell you where you can find the “monthly outlook” forecast.
At the Met site I did some digging. They have “Weather Call” which will send forecasts to a cell phone, PDA, etc. The PDF on “Public Services” indicated an up to 30 day forecast as “Further Forecast”. A search of the site did not provide a location for such.
Looking at their regular UK forecast page:
in the lower right there is a frame: Weather forecast: UK
It contains tabs for 1-2 days , 3 -5 days , 6 – 15 days, and 16 – 30 days.
Content of 6 – 15 is:

UK Outlook for Friday 3 Dec 2010 to Sunday 12 Dec 2010:
Remaing very cold with further snow showers or longer spells of snow likely almost anywhere across the UK during the period. Eastern and southeastern parts are most at risk at first, but a brief settled period is likely over the first weekend, but still cold with widespread overnight frosts, some freezing fog and cold temperatures inland. Most inland areas should remain dry with some cold winter sunshine by day. Into the new week, it will remain very cold for many with further snow showers likely around some coastal areas, and widespread overnight frosts. There is also a chance that more persistent rain, sleet and snow may spread into the southern half of the UK for a time, consequently becoming slightly less cold here.
Updated: 1306 on Sun 28 Nov 2010

Content of 16 – 30 is:

UK Outlook for Monday 13 Dec 2010 to Monday 27 Dec 2010:
The cold conditions are likely to continue. Precipitation amounts should be average or slightly below, with a risk of sleet and snow at times in many areas. Sunshine amounts are likely to be above average, although some southeastern parts may see more in the way of cloud. Temperatures are likely to continue below average, with widespread frosts, sometimes severe. However, some western and southern parts may be less cold at the start of the period in particular, but still with the risk of further rain, sleet and snow.
Updated: 1157 on Sun 28 Nov 2010


Having just driven back from France, with no mishaps, where there was just as much freezing weather, including snow, my reaction to the UK met office is blunt.
Please do not preach to us.
You sit in your ivory towers with your super-expensive computers, and, year by year, your forecast of the UK climate is always wrong, and is getting worse.
I, for one, see no point in continuing to finance you if you persist in providing weather data based on a teenager’s application of the interweb, for your reliance on so-called ‘climate forecast computers’ has come to zero.
Unfortunately, I am forced to pay various taxes of which a pittance comes to you.


The article says that the “prediction” is on the Met at:
Bye the Way, thanks for the website. I am HEARTILY sick of the Anthropogenic Global Warmists who have predicted every disaster known to the human race – and then come up with this or that excuse when Nature shows they made a colossal mistake. Keep up the good work.

keith at hastings uk

According to Vicky Pope of the Met Office, reported in eg UK Daily Telegraph ( , the warming by CO2 is still racing ahead but has been slowed/masked by dastardly cooling from aerosol pollution emitted by Asian economies. Warming trend (they love linear don’t they) over the last decade in a range
2010 is still set to be 2nd warmest she says, once they have corrected recent under recording of sea temps. And the warmest decade, so there!
Globullwarming is still alive and kicking. ( Freezing here in east Sussex, with some snow, that our houses aren’t really built for…)

Well, the Norwegian equivalent of the UK Met Office, has not stopped issuing seasonal forecasts although the track record is much like in the UK.
For the period December 2010 – February 2011, predicts an impressive 2.5C above normal (1960-1990) for my area. This is a bold prediction since the 20 day average is currently something like 3C below normal.

The seasonal outlook for Norway for the period December 2010 – February 2011 is temperature above the normal for the whole country. The greatest deviation from the normal is 2.5 °C above and this is located to the inner part of Southern Norway. For most of the coastal areas the seasonal outlook is 1.5-2 °C above the normal. For the rest of the country it is ca. 2 °C above the normal. The normal period 1961-1990 is used here.

But then again, it isn’t too surprising, considering who makes these predictions for It is well known to be Rasmus Benestad of RealClimate fame.

H.R., the Weather Channel provides UK weather at, but frankly it’s no better than the Met Office at weather prediction. In fairness, the dynamics in play in the atmosphere are rather complex in the North-West corner of Europe, particularly over the UK and Ireland, and even accurate short-term prediction is exceedingly difficult.
Spend a few weeks checking out The weather systems here are sometimes mind-boggling.

Global Warming is one huge tangle of contradictions,
Climatic temperatures rise and fall all the time everywhere, I haven’t seen any evidence of temperatures spiraling out of control one way or the other, globally or locally and this is the basis of all the “global warming” arguments,
It’s about time these protagonists in the media wind their necks in and hold their hands up when they get it wrong!
Eat some humble pie!! 🙂

Leon Brozyna

Met Office forecast for this winter can be safely ignored. In fact, their forecast for any season/month can be safely ignored.
And for short-term forecasts, look out the window.

keith at hastings uk

oops, meant to add the reported trend figure of 0.05 C to my comment. Sorry. Was top end of the range quoted, I’ve mislaid the lower figure, think it was 0.013 C

The most frequently occurring average winter temperature for UK -CET during La Nina winters has been in the range of 5 to 6 degrees C[ occured 7 times ]. The mathematical average of all La Nina winters is about 4.3 C [4.7 C if looking at last 7 La Nina winters only] .The average of all winter temperatures for the last 61 years was about 4.25 C. So 2011 winter could be warmer than last winter’s 2.43 C and could even be 4- 5 C if the history of the past La Nina winters is any guide . If this were to happen ,this would represent about a couple of degrees warmer than last winter’s 2.43 C . Perhaps this where the Met Office may be coming from .



INDEPENDENT (UK) – 20 March 2000
According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event”….”Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said.

UK winter snow since 2007

Evening Standard – 8 February 2007
“Airports close as snow brings travel chaos to Britain”

UPI – 2 December 2008
“Early snow blanketed much of Britain Tuesday,…”

Guardian – 2 February 2009
“Transport hit as UK wakes to heaviest snow in decades

BBC – 7 January 2010
“Frozen Britain seen from above”

Reuters – 13 January 2010
“Britain, shivering through its coldest winter in three decades…”

BBC – 25 November 2010
“The earliest widespread snowfall for 17 years has gripped many parts of the UK.”

More to come?

WeatherAction forecast – 24 Nov 2010
· USA Extreme snow / thunder / tornado deluges 26-30th
“VERY COLD WEATHER will continue in Britain & most of Ireland through the first Week of December”, said Piers

And the realisation from the Independent 10 years on.
“Earliest white winter for two decades could go on for 10 days”


Met Office Seasonal Failures
25 September 2008
The Met Office forecast for the coming winter suggests it is, once again, likely to be milder than average. It is also likely that the coming winter will be drier than last year.
25 Feb 2009
Coldest winter for a decade – Met Office
30 April 2009
The coming summer is ‘odds on for a barbecue summer’, according to long-range forecasts
Met Office cools summer forecast
Met office forecast a mild to average winter
Met Office – 5 January 2010
“The current cold weather started in mid December and it has been the most prolonged spell of freezing conditions across the UK since December 1981.”
“Britain’s freezing weather: worst snow for 50 years”


Rather nice animation by the BBC about the jetstream. Believe it or not, no reference to climate change.

Warren in Minnesota

Awww…. -10C equals 14F. But 40cm of snow equals about 15-16 inches which is significant in Minnesota. That much snow can slow traffic until plowed & salted (if there are plows & salt), and is good for skiing.

R. de Haan

If the Met Office would have been a private company they would have:
A. gone bankrupt
B. made excellent weather forecasts
Unfortunately Met Office is a Government organization that has been ordered to support the party line of the Global Agenda.
That’s why their management is rewarded with exorbitant bonus payments for what really is a bad performance. In other words a reward for selling their soul and their scientific integrity.
Well, we all know the list.
The worst part is that we are still denying there is a conspiracy going on here.

View from the Solent

H.R. says:
November 28, 2010 at 2:09 pm
I’d like to see some comments from the Brits as to what they use for an alternative source to the Met Office forecasts.
I use Joe Bastardi. Who forecast the current cold, followed by a non-cold winter in UK.

P Walker

stephen richards – I haven’t seen Joe Bastardi’s prediction for Europe , but the only parts of NA that he predicts warmer than average temps for is the southern third or so . He calls for below average temps and above average snowfall from the NW all the way to N England . Things look look shakey for the Ohio valley as well . I’m assuming that the weather will be cold and snowy for Canada to boot .

Baa Humbug

Am I correct in recalling the Met Office boss receiving some millions in bonuses earlier this year?
Our poor poor cousins in the formerly Great Britain. But don’t worry, us Aussies will catch up to you soon, afterall, our PM is a Welsh woman.

I find this forecast a little surprising myself with the strong Arctic Oscillation…


The Met office admitted defeat a while ago. From this BBC story

The Met Office has now admitted to BBC News that its annual global mean forecast predicted temperatures higher than actual temperatures for nine years out of the last 10.
This “warming bias” is very small – just 0.05C. And the Met Office points out that the variance between the forecast and the actual temperature is within its own stated margins of error

By my calculations 0.05C per year amounts to 5C per 100 years. Their testimony before the House of Commons claimed that they use the same code for their climate models as for their forecasts so that means that all their 100 year climate model forecasts should be reduced by 5C.

Peter H

November is in the Autumn.
Winter starts on Dec 1st ends on February 28th (as does a winter forecast).
So, it makes no sense for the gallery here to start crowing about a failed winter forecast on today, November the 28th.
[Note: That applies to the Northern Hemisphere. ~dbs, mod.]