An historical perspective of the climate statistics for Coventry during April 2018

Temperature

There are signs of considerable warming during April in the 21st century in our region; of the 20 warmest April months on record, 8 have been recorded since 2002.

The average April temperature for the first few years of the 21st century has been 1.3C higher than a century ago, with only 3 April months recording below average temperatures (1971-2000) since 1989.

Although temperatures were up and down through April this year, as you might expect in Spring, April 2018 has followed this recent warming trend with the mean monthly temperature (10.0C) being 1.1C higher than average.

It has been the mildest April in Coventry since 2014 (10.5C); only six April months have been warmer than this April since 1945 (1961, 1987, 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2014).

Looking even further back, only ten April moths have been warmer than 2018 since 1892.

For the fourth April in the past five years, there was no air frost in Coventry last month, and with only one ground frost, this has been the most frost-free April in Coventry for over 40 years.

19ththe warmest day of the month recorded a maximum temperature of 25.9C at Bablake; this made it the warmest April day in the city since 2011 (26.0C); only two April months have enjoyed higher temperatures than this in the past 126 years in Coventry (1893 & 2011).

22ndthe warmest night of the month recorded a minimum temperature of 13.0C, making it the warmest April night in Coventry since before 1892.

Rainfall

In recent years, April rainfall totals have been rather variable in Coventry; seven years ago, for example, April 2011 was the driest April (3.8mm) in Coventry since 1938, whilst in 2012, we recorded 104.2mm of rain, double the city’s 30-year average rainfall for April.

Between 2005 and 2017, April averaged just 39.0mm of rain in Coventry, compared to 57.7mm in the 11 years prior to this, so there has been a drying trend in the city during April for some years.

Prior to April 2018, only five April months had been wetter than average in Coventry since 2001 – now make that six!

With 72.0mm of rain (138% 0f average), this has been the wettest April at Bablake since 2012 (104.2mm); only seven April months have been wetter than April 2018 since 1937 (1961, 1983, 1993, 1998, 2000, 2001 and 2012).

1stThe wettest day of the month recorded 17.4mm of rain, making this the wettest April day in Coventry since 2004 (21.4mm).

Sunshine

Checking back through the records, we find that the average April sunshine total is now 11% higher than one hundred years ago.

Two years ago, April 2015 (215.3 hr) was the sunniest April in Coventry since 2007 (243.0hr), which itself was the sunniest April month on record (1895).

As a contrast, we only recorded 111.7 hours of sunshine in April 2018, just 78% of average. This made it the dullest April in Coventry since 1993 (96.1hr). This was the only April with less sunshine than this year in Coventry since 1981.

There was no sunshine recorded on four consecutive days from the 9th to 12th April, making this the dullest period in any April in Coventry since 1971 (5 days). Just out of interest, the city record for April is six dull days in a row in 1966.