IT’S official – Huddersfield has had its wettest year since records began.
As the UK teeters on the brink of notching its wettest year ever, Salendine Nook weatherman Paul Stevens has confirmed our region has already reached that miserable record.
The former Met Office weatherman has revealed the soggy 12 months saw us suffer almost double our usual annual rainfall.
In June and July we had more than triple our normal rain levels.
And four months – January, April, September and December – all saw about double the average amount.
Paul said: “In a typical year Huddersfield might expect around 746mm or 30 inches of rain, but a staggering 1,340mm fell in the 12 months to December 28.
“That’s 54 inches of rain or 4½ feet of level rain falling across the town.
“There is little surprise that it has turned out to be the wettest since our local records began in 1923.
“No other 12 month period on record comes close.
“It’s also no surprise that our reservoirs are full and we are at constant threat, with every low pressure that passes over us, of local flooding.
“In the top five wettest years, 1928 came closest with 1,194mm.
“Even so, that’s still 146mm (5 inches) short of 2012.
“Many reasons have been given for this wet year.
“Some people put it down to the Jet Stream moving south and sticking over Yorkshire for much of the year, apart from two short months back in February and March this year when below normal rain fell.
“The question is why has the Jet Stream moved?
“Some climate scientists say it’s down to warmer than normal North Atlantic temperatures around Greenland and is part of a much wider 30 to 50 year ocean cycle.
“Others say it’s down to extra sea ice melt due to this warmer ocean phase and perhaps global warming – or a mixture of both.
“Quite what will happen next summer is open to much debate.”
The wetness of the spring and summertime was a particularly unpleasant feature of 2012, causing a host of annual outdoor events to be cancelled or postponed.
Events hit by the inclement downpours included Honley Show, Harden Moss sheepdog trials, Huddersfield’s Race for Life, Elland Carnival and a host of community fairs and galas.
Late June and early July saw many parts of Kirklees and Calderdale flooded while Huddersfield Carnival was moved from Greenhead Park to the town centre to save the grass from being turned into a quagmire.
Six of the 10 wettest years in the UK, since records began in 1910, have now occurred since 1998.
The wettest on record is 2000 when 1,337.3mm of rain fell.
It is followed by 1954 and then 2008, with 1,295mm.
This year’s average UK-wide rainfall is currently standing at 1,291mm.