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The Great Snowstorm Of March 1886


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Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

    At the end of February 1886, a low pressure pushed across southern parts of the UK producing a great snowstorm that badly affected NE England and SE Scotland especially

    Rslp18860301.gif

    Snow fell for parts of England and Wales on the 28th February and this spread northwards with drier weather finally come into the south late on the 1st of March

    Across northern parts fell for up to 30 hours and across Perthshire down to Northumberland, it was up to 50 hours. Up to 2ft of snow fell in these areas.

    Some snow depths

    Dalry: 6 inches

    Waterford: 6 inches

    Orleton: 6 inches

    Llandudno: 9 inches

    Hamilton: 12 inches

    Jedburgh: 12 inches

    Paisley: 14 inches

    Hawick: 18 inches

    North Shields: 24 inches

    From T.W. Blackhouse, Sunderland

    "The great snowstorm of March 1st and 2nd was in some respect the most severe I ever knew. It snowed here incessantly, as far as I observed, for 50 hours, up to 9am on the 3rd - though at times very slightly, and it may have ceased at some time. The snow drifted very much, so that it was impossible to tell the exact depth, but as near as I could judgeit was 2 inches by 2pm, 10 inches by 10.15pm of the 1st; 12.5 inches by 8am on the 2nd; and it reached a maximum of 14 inches on the 3rd."

    The period 1st-16th March 1886 was unusually cold with a CET of 0.2

    The period 15th February - 16th March CET: 0.4

    It became very mild during the last 3rd of March 1886 with a CET of 9.8 for the period 20th-31st

    Some reports of March 1886

    Banbury: On the first 12 days the mean temp was below 32F

    Cossey: Frost prevailed every night to 18th inclusive.

    Clifton, Bristol: Mean temp for first 17 days 32.2F

    Orleton: The first 18 days were very cold with severe frosts every night and frequent light falls of snow. On the 19th, the winds changed to the south with a great rise of temperature and continued to the end of the month.

    Leicester: From 11th February to 19th March, the min. on grass was always below 32F

    Hesley Hall: Frost prevailed on the first 18 days after which the temp. did not once fall below 32F

    Cargen: The cold for the first 17 days accompanied by heavy snowstorms, the mean temp 32.1F

    Waterford: The snow that fell on the last day of February remained on the ground in places until the 17th

    From the Times of 2nd March 1886

    March1886.jpg

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    Posted
  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine and 15-25c
  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)
    I'm in comparison mode here - but how similiar were the synoptics to wha happened on 1 March 1986 quite uncanny!

    dont know..you havnt said???

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    Posted
  • Location: Brixton, South London
  • Location: Brixton, South London
    very interesting. what i find amusing is the fact that there was "no serious interruption to street traffic" in london. so we coped better in 1886 than 2009. great

    Yes indeed...the relative ease by which snow was cleared in the 19c and early 20c is something of a recurrent theme in the contemporary press reports quoted by Mr Data. My guess is that in pre-National Assistance times (pre 1929?) the authorities were able to call upon a pool of unemployed working class men to clear the snow.

    regards

    ACB

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    Posted
  • Location: St. Albans, Herts
  • Location: St. Albans, Herts

    Also people would have lived and worked in almost the same area, so many of the problems of today, of getting to places, would not have been an issue. Even street traffic would not have gone far by today's standards.

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    Posted
  • Location: Swansea (Abertawe) , South Wales, 420ft ASL
  • Weather Preferences: Storms & Snow.
  • Location: Swansea (Abertawe) , South Wales, 420ft ASL

    Great read, thank you

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    Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
    dont know..you havnt said???

    What I meant to say is how similiar the chart for March 1 1886 was to the chart for March 1 1986 - I don't have a copy of the chart for 1986, but do recall it having a undercuting low in a similiar position with a long easterly fetch over the country giving one of the coldest March days for England and Wales of the 20th century. There is a forecast from the BBC on youtube showing the synoptics at the time.

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