2011 Britain's second warmest year on recordDecember 31, 2011 in Earth / Environment
2011 was the second warmest year on record in Britain, the Met Office national weather service has said, a marked swing from a chillier 2010.
Provisional figures showed that the average temperature throughout the year was 9.62 degrees Celsius (49.3 degrees Fahrenheit).
The record high is still 2006, which notched an average temperature of 9.73 C (49.5 F).
All but one of the top 10 warmest years on record have occurred since 1997 and all Britain's top seven warmest years happened in the last decade.
However, 2010 was the 12th-coldest year on record with 7.97 C (46.3 F), meaning 2011 was a marked change from last year.
Britain's warmest spring on record, and the second warmest autumn, bookended a cool summer.
Apart from January, which endured the knock-on from the cold December in 2010, the only other months in 2011 that had below-average temperatures were June, July and August.
Scotland suffered its wettest year on record in 2011, with 73.2 inches (1,859.5 millimetres) of rain, beating the previous record set in 1990.
Meanwhile some English regions endured some of their driest-ever months.
The warmest temperature recorded in 2011 was 33.1 C (91.5 F) on June 27 at Gravesend in southeast England.
The coldest was minus 13 C (8.6 F) at Altnaharra in Scotland on January 8. The strongest gust of wind was also recorded in the Highlands, reaching 165 miles (265.5 kilometres) per hour, at the summit of Cairn Gorm.
(c) 2011 AFP
"2011 Britain's second warmest year on record" December 31, 2011 http://phys.org/news/2011-12-britain-warmest-year.html