weather-uk  press pack


Ready-prepared articles on past climates


  • 981114  Greenland ice-cores reveal the past  One of the most compelling claims by scientists studying global warming is that the rise in temperature over the last 20 years has been bigger
  • 981205  Europe’s climate 1000 years ago  When, 1075 years ago, King Wenceslas looked out, the scene that greeted his eyes was hardly unusual for a December morning in Bohemia.
  • 990116  Weather in Roman Britain  A climate warm enough to support vineyards as far north as Yorkshire, a rising sea-level, and the Fens partly relinquished to the sea, Norwich and
  • 990220  February 1891 – the driest month on record  Parks and gardens carpeted with crocuses and snowdrops, daffodils in bloom by the month’s end, butterflies and bees going
  • 990814  The Spanish Armada, beaten by Drake and the weather  Afflavit Deus et dissipate sunt   This was the inscription on Elizabeth I’s medal awarded to naval combatants in the battle
  • 000916  Weather during The Battle of Britain  From August 8 when the Luftwaffe began mass raids on targets in southern England to the middle of September when the Germans switched to
  • 020111  Climate and early human settlement From the earliest days of human history climate has controlled where human beings have settled, while weather events have helped mould
  • 020223  The “Climatic Optimum” – warmest since the ice age  The record-breaking warmth of recent weeks is not itself evidence of climate change, but it certainly contributes to the rising
  • 020727  Weather in World War II  A soft, silent, summer night, a desultory breeze stirring the leaves, the bright full moon hanging low in the sky … the stuff of second-rate romantic novels,
  • 030308  How was Britain cut off from the continent?  Recent reminiscences of the 1953 east coast floods should remind us that the North Sea has had a disproportional impact on British
  • 0090xx  Weather knowledge in olden days  Imagine yourself the village sage 500 or more years ago. The local folk rely on your wisdom for, among many other things, long-range weather
  • 029900  European mediaeval weather disasters  The inhabitants of northwest Europe do not experience the extraordinary violence of a mature tropical hurricane, or the catastrophic power
  • 029901  The American War of Independence  The weather forsook the British cause and fought on the side of the Americans at several crucial points during the War of Independence
  • 029902  How the ice age ended  The change in world climate at the end of the last glacial period is particularly important to us at the beginning of the 21st century because the
  • 029903  The climatic optimum, 4000BC  Post-glacial warming peaked in most parts of the world between 6000 and 3500BC in a phase which is sometimes described as the ‘Climatic
  • 029904  The growth of civilisation  Paradoxically, a deteriorating climate was probably responsible, in part at least, for the development of the great early civilisations. As the Sahara
  • 029905  Bronze Age climatic deterioration  A major hiccup in the generally benign conditions of the third millennium BC happened around 2200BC, as the Neolithic gave way to the Bronze
  • 029906  The wet Iron Age centuries  Atlantic storms became more frequent and more intense during the first millennium BC, and this phase of wet summers and stormy winters reached a
  • 029907  Climate change, 400 AD  After the benign weather which characterised most of the Roman occupation of Britain, there was a sharp climatic deterioration early in the fifth century
  • 029908  Climate and the Central American civilisations  The second flowering of civilisation in Central America was associated with the drier centuries between 800 and 1000 AD: the ruins
  • 029909  The last 1000 years in Europe  Weatherwise, it was a millennium just like many others. There were several warm centuries, a cold period last three or four hundred years,
  • 029910  The Little Optimum  The climate of the early Middle Ages was warm and dry over most of Europe – indeed, the twelfth and thirteenth centuries (along with the twentieth) were the
  • 029911  The Little Ice Age  Unseen changes in Europe’s climate were already afoot during the 1200s. The Norse settlers in Greenland had noted a marked advance of Arctic ice beginning in
  • 029912  Frost Fairs and Famine  Scotland’s climate reached a low point during the last two decades of the seventeenth century, the harvest failed in most years, the fisheries died out,