Ireland and UK have one of hottest February days on record
Warmest winter day in UK with 20.6 degrees, but Ireland misses record by one degree
Zoe Weber Hall and Aoife Munro from Dublin enjoy the mild spring weather in Dublin’s Merrion Square. Photograph: Alan Betson
It was close but not close enough. The sun shone but not enough to make Monday the warmest February day ever in Ireland or break a record that stretches back almost 130 years.
The highest February temperature recorded in Ireland was 18.1 degrees on February 23rd, 1891 at what is now Casement Aerodrome outside Dublin.
The highest temperature reached on Monday was 17.3 degrees, in Mount Dillon, Co Roscommon, not even a second placing.
Paul Moore of Met Éireann’s climate services said the second warmest February day ever recorded in Ireland was 18 degrees in 2012.
But records were broken in the UK. The Met Office announced on Twitter that “it’s offically the UK’s warmest winter day on record”, with a top temperature of 20.6 degrees at Trawsgoed in Wales.
Three locations in Britain breached the previous 20-degree record. As well as Trawsgoed, 20.4 degrees was recorded at Northolt in Middlesex, England, and 20.1 degrees at Gogerddan, also in Wales.
Scotland experienced its warmest February day on record last Thursday with 18.3 degrees in Aboyne, Scotland.
Back home, Met Éireann forecaster Siobhán Ryan said the forecast for Monday had been for temperatures of 17 degrees in parts of the midlands and west, but she said the models do not always pick up the effects of sunshine on localised locations.
“It is sunshine dependent,” Ms Ryan said.
She also stressed that Monday’s high temperature is not attributable to global warming and is more likely the result of the natural variability in the weather.
Ms Ryan explained the higher temperatures are a consequence of a high-pressure area over continental Europe which is bringing up warm air from the Iberian peninsula.
The weather will be pleasant for most of the country until Thursday when normal seasonal conditions will resume. Wind and rain will return next weekend.