The History of England

from Celts through 20th century

Climate in Great Britain

Category: Land + People

Climate in Great Britain

The British Isles which are surrounded by the ocean have an insular climate.

There are 3 things that chiefly determine the climate of the United Kingdom: the position of the islands in the temperate belt; the fact that the prevailing winds blow from the west and south-west and the warm current — the Gulf Stream that flows from the Gulf of Mexico along the western shores of England. All these features make the climate more moderate, without striking difference between seasons. It is not very cold in winter and never very hot in summer.

So, the British ports are ice-free and its rivers are not frozen throughout the year. The weather on the British Isles has a bad reputation. It is very changeable and fickle. The British say that there is a climate in other countries, but we have just weather. If you don’t like the weather in England, just wait a few minutes.

It rains very often in all seasons in Great Britain. Autumn and winter are the wettest. The sky is usually grey and cold winds blow. On the average, Britain has more than 200 rainy days a year. The English say that they have 3 variants of weather: when it rains in the morning, when it rains in the afternoon, and when it rains all day long. Sometimes it rains so heavily, that they say «It’s raining cats and dogs».

Britain is known all over the world for its fogs. Sometimes fogs are so thick that it’s impossible to see anything within a few meters. The winter fogs of London are, indeed, awful; they surpass all imagination. In a dense fog all traffic is stopped, no vehicle can move from fear of dreadful accidents. So, we may say that the British climate has three main features: it is mild, humid and very changeable.

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