Why the good weather this week is not a mini-heatwave

Winter gave us low average temperatures, dumpings of snow and months with little Sun

Boxer dogs Tyson and Lexie, from Ringsend, Dublin, enjoying the warmer weather in the sea at Sandymount. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Boxer dogs Tyson and Lexie, from Ringsend, Dublin, enjoying the warmer weather in the sea at Sandymount. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

 

It is not even “a mini-heatwave” – merely some days this week when there will be “above-normal temperatures instead of below-normal temperatures”, Met Éireann confirms.

It may feel like it’s unseasonably warm in coming days, but that is more to do with a winter marked by low average temperatures since January, including two extended periods when large dumpings of snow fell on most of the country – and months marked by a notable absence of Sun.

All of that means “nature is behind” its normal cycle, according to forecaster Harm Luijkx.

This week will add up to “a short spell of decent weather, ending in the middle of the weekend”, he adds. And while it is a welcome change from a long Irish winter, which was also marked by above average rainfall in most areas, temperatures will struggle to reach 18 degrees.

People enjoy a barbeque in the sunshine on Primrose Hill in London, England. Unseasonable warmth means the British capital is expected to be one of the hottest places in Europe this week, with forecasters predicting possible temperatures of 26 Celsius on Thursday. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
People enjoy a barbeque in the sunshine on Primrose Hill in London, England. Unseasonable warmth means the British capital is expected to be one of the hottest places in Europe this week, with forecasters predicting possible temperatures of 26 Celsius on Thursday. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Eastern areas and the midlands will benefit most from the warmer conditions, in contrast to the west of Ireland.

Will feel humid

By Saturday, the best that can be hoped for is 16 degrees, though it will feel humid– average temperatures for this time of year are 12 to 13 degrees.

By Sunday, it will back to cooler temperatures, but normal for this time of year, and with broken weather due to Atlantic weather fronts replacing the effects of a high over mainland Europe.

London and southeast England are predicted to reach temperatures of 25 to 26 degrees in coming days due to that high pressure over the Continent, he says, but even that would not be classified as a mini-heatwave – such temperatures are normal for that region, he says.

Joanne Walker of the web & app design team and Evelyn Cusack, head of forecasting, both of Met Éireann, launch the weather forecaster’s new website and app giving seven-day forecasts in local areas on Wednesday, as spring weather finally arrives in Dublin. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times
Joanne Walker of the web & app design team and Evelyn Cusack, head of forecasting, both of Met Éireann, launch the weather forecaster’s new website and app giving seven-day forecasts in local areas on Wednesday, as spring weather finally arrives in Dublin. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

The rise in Irish temperatures will nonetheless improve soil temperatures, Luijkx predicts, and improve growing conditions for farmers, who have had to struggle with waterlogged fields and a dearth of fodder due to a lack of grass – heralding a very late but welcome spring.