An historical perspective of the climate statistics

for Coventry during October 2020


In the twentieth century, there was little sign of warming in October, perhaps just a 0.3°C rise in average temperatures, though since the Millennium, there has been a 1.3°C increase on the 1990’s. The 2001 to 2019 October average was 11.4C compared to 10.2C average from 1991 to 2000.

All of our coldest Octobers were recorded before 1919, while many of the best have been in more recent years, as can be seen below, with 2001 being the warmest October in Central England's temperature series since at least 1659.

WARMEST                              COLDEST

13.7C   2001                            7.0C   1896

13.2C   2005                            7.2C   1919

13.0C   2006                            7.3C   1893

12.8C   1921,1995, 2011         7.4C   1895


October 2020 (10.6C) has been the third October in succession in which the mean monthly temperature has been close to the 30-year Bablake average 1981-2010 (10.7C).

Interestingly, only 7 October months have been cooler than this year since the Millennium, namely 2002, 2003, 2008,2010,2012, 2018 and 2019.

This was however, the first October without any recorded ground frost since 2006; just out of interest, there were 8 ground frosts in October 2008.

  • 20ththe mildest day of the month (16.9C) was the lowest such value since 2012 (16.3C).


Some may be surprised to hear that October is the wettest month of the year in Coventry (67.8mm from 1981-2010), with autumn our wettest season.

For the second year running, October 2020 has far exceeded that 30 year average with 114.4mm of rain, 169% of normal. Last year we recorded 95.0mm of rain during October.

It has been our wettest October in Coventry since 2013 (146.4mm), with only four October months wetter than this year in the past 60 years (1966, 1967, 1987 and 2013).

3rdwith 38.0mm of rain, this was the wettest October day in Coventry since 1949 (38.3mm), with 50mm falling in a rain event from the 2nd October into the 3rd.

Wettest October days since 1892

51.3mm   1939

38.3mm   1949

38.1mm   1929

38.0mm   2020

36.0mm   2002


Although there was a 59% increase in sunshine levels in Coventry between 1894 and 1999, the early 21st century (2000 to 2019 = 97.7hr) has seen a fall in sunshine totals back below the levels more common in the 1980s (103.4hr).

October 2020 has been the second disappointing October month in Coventry (67.3hr) for sunshine in a row (2019 = 91.1hr), and the dullest in the city since 1976 (60.3hr) with just 64% of average monthly sunshine.

  • 22ndthe sunniest day of the month recorded only 6.0hr of sunshine; this is the lowest such value since 2000 (5.8hr)