Weather in England in the 1800s

by Agnes

What was the weather in England like during the 1800s?


The weather in England is something we're a little obsessed about. But then, it's usually so variable that this may be its own excuse.

By all accounts, in the 19th century England experienced much colder winters than we've had in the last few years. Many years we saw snow and ice along with very cold northerly and northeasterly winds.

In January 1811 the River Thames froze over.

The winter of 1813/1814 was one of the coldest on record, with a Frost Fair being held on the frozen River Thames at London. Snow lay thickly and London was swathed in thick fog (made worse by people burning coal in their hearths to keep warm.)

1816 was known as the year without summer. The eruption of the Tambora volcano in East India caused thick ash clouds that greatly affected temperatures in Europe (just as the Askja eruption in Iceland had done a century earlier.) Snow drifts remained on English hills until late July 1816 and by September the River Thames had frozen again.

The rest of the century seems to continue in the same vein. Very snowy, cold winters with snowfalls starting early (sometimes as early as October) and continuing until March / April the following spring.

It wasn't until 1895 that England again had a few (typical) wet, snowless winters.

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