Year of ‘Hurricane’ brings a cold, wet misery

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The year of 2015 will go down in Hebridean history as having some of the worst weather ever recorded on the Isles.

Every month (with the exception of only September and October) brought above average rainfall, with winter-like conditions prevailing right through to the summer months.

As a result, sunshine and warmth were at a premium throughout the entire 12 months of the year.

The ferocity of the elements reached their peak on the night of 8-9 January when, for the first time ever at Stornoway Airport, the average wind speed reached a full hurricane force 12.

Damage was widespread across the Isles, and it was very fortunate no-one was severely injured in this most violent of storms.

There was no respite from the bad weather during the normal ‘spring’ period, as the uncompromising rains continued without abatement during February and March.

The three-week period from mid-February to early March was the 3rd wettest such period ever recorded in the Isles at this time of year.

Normally, April, May and June bring much drier, sunnier and calmer weather to the Isles.

It is often the best time of year to appreciate the beautiful Hebridean scenery (without the curse of the Highland midge).

But 2015 brought an extraordinary exception to this rule, as the coldest, wettest and dullest May, June, July were measured in the Islessince reliable weather observations began in the late 1800s.

There was some weak compensation during late August, September and October, however, as a late ‘Indian Summer’ brought some occasional fine days and (slightly) drier conditions.

Mind you, little profit could be made of the better weather as the daylight hours were already getting much shorter by this time of year.

And as if picking up where it left off in July, winter quickly returned with a vengeance in November and December, with renewed and relentless heavy rains and strong winds sweeping in from the Atlantic during the final eight weeks of year.

Stornoway Town 2015 Weather Statistics

Average Daily High: (Highest 22.5°C 23rd August)

Average Daily Low: (Lowest -2.2C 20th January)

Deviation of temperatures from long-term mean: +0.1°C

Total rainfall: 1630mm (an astonishing 130% of average)

Rainy days: 277 (76% of all days)

Snow days: 23

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