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The phenomenally wet Autumn of 2000


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  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

Despite last year and May-July 2007, for me this ie autumn 2000 was the period of time for amazing rainfalls. Only 3 days with neglible rainfall at Manchester in the whole of October and November 2000 combined!

September 2000 saw the start of an exceptionally wet period which was to last more or less until the following April. It was the wettest September since 1981 with 132.6mm and had a CET of 14.7. Some of the notable features of the month was the heatwave just before mid-month with Jersey recording 28C on the 10th and Hawarden reaching 29C on the 11th. The heatwave ended with severe thunderstorms across northern England and southern Scotland. It was wet from the 14th to the 21st with much heavy rain with flooding at Portsmouth.

Here's some data from this month.


Mean Max: 15.5C (+0.0) Rainfall: 102mm (151%)


Mean Max: 16.8C (+1.5) Rainfall: 164mm (122%)


Mean Max: 18.3C (+1.3) Rainfall: 116mm (156%)


Mean Max: 20.1C (+0.8) Rainfall: 106mm (207%)


Mean Max: 17.1C (+1.2) Rainfall: 134mm (158%)

October 2000 was the wettest October since 1903 with an EWR of 188.0mm. It had a CET of 10.3 and a sunshine total of 90.7hrs, the dullest since 1991.

The wet weather of September continued into the October with a succession of low pressures and frontal systems crossing the UK, there was not a single day that an anticyclone was over the UK.

As a result of the rainfalls, there were flooding especially in Surrey and Kent on the 10th and 11th, where heavy rain and thunderstorms became slow moving. Lewes and Uckfield were the worst hit towns, at Uckfield, 150mm+ of rain fell in 12 hours. Residents had to be rescued from the floodwaters and hundreds were made homeless.

On the 29th, a wave rapidly deepened and this brought weather chaos to much of England and Wales on the 30th. Across northern England as the exceptional low pressure of 950mb tracked across the region, the torrential rain turned to snow down to sea level.

Further south, torrential rain and severe gales were causing chaos with uprooted trees blocking roads and rail, thousands without electricity. Sadly 3 people lost their lives due to the adverse conditions. 2 people were injured when a tornado struck Selsey on the south coast.

Flooding became a serious problem across the UK during October 2000, with the storm compounding the problem giving many areas rainfall totals of 1"+. More than 20 rivers were on severe flood alert after the storm.


Here's some rainfall totals for this month


Rainfall: 109mm (124%)


Rainfall: 194mm (252%)


Rainfall: 120mm (245%)


Rainfall: 155mm (268%)


Rainfall: 227mm (182%)


Rainfall: 147mm (165%)

November 2000 was the wettest November since 1940 with an EWR of 182.1mm. This produced a total of 502.7mm for Autumn 2000, the wettest Autumn ever recorded.

As a result of the wetness of the Autumn, there was severe flooding across a number of rivers around the UK including the Severn and the Ouse at York where the height of the river was at its highest ever recorded. There were very few dry days and rainfalls were often prolong and intense. The last week of November was very mild, similiar to that of late November 1979 with maxima as high as 17C at Torquay on the 28th.

Here's some rainfall data for this month.


Aberdeen 138mm (185%)

Manchester 181mm (232%)

Cambridge 115mm (226%)

Heathrow 100mm (181%)

Belfast 111mm (142%)

The wettest days during Autumn 2000 for England and Wales

19th September: 23.72mm

9th October: 20.76mm

29th October: 39.96mm

5th November: 32.40mm

Autumn 2000 was the wettest ever season recorded for England and Wales since at least 1766

For Scotland and Northern Ireland, it wasn't quite as wet as for England and Wales but it was still way above average.

In Manchester, there was only 3 dry days in the whole of October and November combined.

Even into the first half of December, the wet weather continued, the 7th being a particularly wet day

The last 4 months of 2000 recorded a total of 644.9mm of rain for England and Wales, more than has been recorded for the first 9 months of 2006 and the whole of 1921.

The period September 1st 2000 -30th April 2001 recorded 1042.1mm of rainfall, there have only been 10 complete years since World War II wetter than this

Autumn 2000

For SE England

Sept: 86.1mm

Oct: 185.9mm

Nov: 146.6mm

For SW England and south Wales

Sept: 144.9mm

Oct: 202.2mm

Nov: 211.1mm

For Central England

Sept: 101.9mm

Oct: 104.7mm

Nov: 108.0mm

For NW England and north Wales

Sept: 129.0mm

Oct: 217.5mm

Nov: 204.1mm

For NE England

Sept: 150.1mm

Oct: 146.4mm

Nov: 166.0mm

For southern Scotland

Sept: 211.3mm

Oct: 233.2mm

Nov: 188.7mm

For northern Scotland

Sept: 124.2mm

Oct: 216.7mm

Nov: 175.7mm

For eastern Scotland

Sept: 73.5mm

Oct: 97.8mm

Nov: 115.0mm

For Northern Ireland

Sept: 105.2mm

Oct: 163.9mm

Nov: 141.1mm

Here are forecasts from this amazing season

1st September 2000: a hint of things to come

2nd September 2000: the first part of September wasn't as bad the rest of the autumn.

3rd September 2000: Penny Tranter warns the jet stream is winding itself up

Edited by Weather-history
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  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District. 290 mts a.s.l.
  • Weather Preferences: Anything extreme
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District. 290 mts a.s.l.

Yes, autumn 2000 really was in a league of its own. 579.8 mm recorded here which is 112 mm more than the next wettest season; winter 1994/95. October and November 2000 are also the only time I've had two consecutive months with more than 200mm.

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  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine and 15-25c
  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)

I often talk about Autumn 2000 to colleagues here in Canada especially out on site when they moan if it rains for more than 2 days in a row..i was building a hotel in Dartmouth and we recorded 120 consecutive days with rainfall from mid August to Dec 22, 2000..it was one of the last projects where i was the site manager before i was promoted and became office based..even today i cant believe we managed to finish the project on time.

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  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl
  • Weather Preferences: obviously snow!
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl

was a laminate floor autumn, hope nothing like this again, tenpin league was rained off on tuesday 7th Nov 2000, Stafford flooded on monday 6th to thurs 9th, only time I have known it, police advising everyone to stay indoors on tues 7th and Wed 8th

who can like this weather I cannot understand, but on the bright side I wasnt that down as I was listening to the New Atlantic 252!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Location: East Devon
  • Location: East Devon

Blimey North Surrey looks as wet as east Devon there, that's unusual. That Autumn might have been what got me interested in river and stream systems, and their flood events and effects on the landscape/river channel, as there is a river and a smaller stream close to my house that both flooded majorly (house its self not at risk though). This is probably a main reason why heavy rain is another weather type I find interesting like many (nothing to do with negative impacts on people living on floodplains which I don't like just in case someone says anything like it's another weather type I shouldn't like/find interesting).

The Southern counties from the IOW to Kent really look exceptionally wet there, 600-800mm widely, over 800mm in one spot! that averages over 200m each month and is half the yearly total for the record breakingly wet year of 2012 at home in East Devon!

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  • Location: Efford, Plymouth
  • Weather Preferences: Misty Autumn Mornings, Thunderstorms and snow
  • Location: Efford, Plymouth

It's a time I remember really well, I was at University then spent 10 days in intensive care in hospital thanks to pneumonia. When I came out of hospital on 6th December after 3 weeks it hadn't stopped raining the whole time so I was told.

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  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet

The monster storm was late October 2000.

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