Hydrological Summary for October 2022 Published

October was a mild and moderately wet month which brought further welcome rainfall amidst one of the more severe droughts of recent decades. Rainfall in October was above average across most of the UK, exceptionally so in parts of Northern Ireland. River flows in October were markedly above average in Northern Ireland, central Scotland and north-west England, but remained below average across central, southern and eastern England. Flows were notably or exceptionally low in some (mainly slowly responding) catchments in south-east England. Groundwater levels were predominantly below normal across the Chalk, with a new record October minimum at Chilgrove House. In the Permo-Triassic sandstones, levels were mostly within the normal range, and generally normal to notably low in other aquifers. Whilst reservoir stocks in Scotland and Northern Ireland were healthy, they remained substantially below average for England and Wales, despite some replenishment of stocks in the north and west. In the south-west, stocks at Wimbleball, Colliford and Stithians were all less than 20% of capacity (compared to October averages of 60-70%), establishing new minima in series from 1988. The wet weather of October and early November has certainly been welcome in providing some relief from drought conditions, with rebounding soil moisture enabling the commencement of groundwater recharge. More of this persistent rainfall is required to replenish low reservoir stocks in England and Wales; however, seasonal outlooks are not strongly indicative of wet weather over winter (and slightly favour dry conditions).

Read the Hydrological Summary