Submitted by Nikos Mastrantonas on
November was a mixed month with settled and cold periods interspersed with mild and stormy interludes. Although rainfall for the UK was near average there were distinct spatial variations, it was drier than average in a band from East Anglia to north-west England and in northern Scotland, and wetter than average in southern England and southern Scotland. Month-end soil moisture deficits (SMDs) remained above average across much of the country, but were eradicated in parts of southern England and Northern Ireland. River flows in western areas were above normal, but elsewhere they remained largely in the normal range or below with exceptionally low flows in catchments in central England and northern Scotland. Groundwater levels continued to fall at the majority of sites in November and were in the normal range or below for the time of year although there was some recharge at faster responding sites. Whilst there was some seasonal recovery in reservoir stocks, most impoundments remained below average, particularly so in England (e.g. 40% below average at Derwent Valley and a third below average at Ardingly). For England and Wales as a whole late November stocks were the fourth lowest in a series from 1990 and the lowest after 2003. Given the current water resources situation, and that any recharge to reservoir stocks and groundwater levels will be starting from a below normal baseline, above average rainfall will be required to return conditions to the normal range in central and eastern England. Although December so far has been wetter than average, forecasts for the winter period remain uncertain.
The full Hydrological Summary can be found here.