Winter 2017/2018 was generally rather unsettled, with only brief settled spells. Temperatures fluctuated, with some mild spells and some periods of widespread frosts and cold conditions, particularly at the end of the season. Rainfall was around average was above average.
December was just 0.2°C above the 1981-2010 average but there were some cold and frosty periods. Storm Caroline, the thirst storm of the season, brought strong winds on the 7th, and a wintry spell brought widespread frosts and some snow for parts of the Midlands from 8th to the 16th. It was generally mild on the run up to Christmas (17th to 25th), after which there was further snow for some, particularly the north. The end of the month was increasingly unsettled, with Storm Dylan bringing further strong winds on the 30th/31st. Sunshine was 115% of average, and it was particularly sunny in north-east England and in southern and central Scotland.
January began rather mild and wet. Storm Eleanor passed across the UK on the 2nd and 3rd bringing windy conditions to much of the UK. From the 6th to the 12th is was more settled with high pressure often nearby leading to frost and fog at times, but the second half of the month was changeable, with significant snow at times in parts of northern England, Scotland and northern Ireland. Storm Fionn was name on the 16th January and affected much of Ireland, whilst overnight on the 17th-18th January, Storm David (which was named by French meteorological service, Meteo France), impacted many central areas of the UK bringing winds of up to 95 mph. Storm Georgina, the seventh named storm of the year, brought strong winds to the UK and Ireland on 24th January. The month ended with frosts and outbreaks of showers. Average temperatures for January 2018 were 0.4C above the 1981-2010 long-term average, and rainfall 110% of the average.
February was a rather cold month, with a mean temperature of just 2.4°C, 1.3°C below the 1981-2010 average. It began rather unsettled but became dry and mild mid-month. However, as February drew to a close, the ‘Beast from the East’ took control (from the 25th Feb onwards) as high pressure set in over Scandinavia, and cold and snowy weather became the predominant features. Despite this, rainfall was 73% of average and sunshine 137% of average, making it provisionally the second sunniest February in the UK since 1929.
UK Weather Averages: Winter 2018 (Source: Met Office)