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Brace yourselves for a 'mini ice age': This winter set to be coldest in 300 YEARS by Fiona Macrae
Thursday, December 30th 2010, 8:27 AM GMT
Co2sceptic (Site Admin)
If you thought last week was as cold as you could bear it, brace yourself. Forecasters say the worst is yet to come, and this winter could be the harshest since the Thames froze over more than three centuries ago.

Temperatures for December are the coldest on record, with the average reading close to minus 1c – almost six degrees below normal.

And with forecasters warning that this winter’s ‘mini ice age’ might last until mid-March, this winter could be the worst since 1683-84 when a fair was held on the Thames.

‘Dense cold air is just north of Britain and will Met Office figures show that the average temperature from December 1, the first day of winter, to December 28 was a bitter minus 0.8c (30.5f).

This equals the record December low of 1890.

But, with the mercury traditionally at its lowest in January and February, and more bracing weather on the way, this winter could bring the biggest freeze in 327 years.

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Forecaster Brian Gaze of The Weather Outlook said: ‘It’s very unusual to have a sub-zero month - the last one at any time of year was February 1986.

‘January and February are expected to be significantly colder than average, with further snow for most of the country, and it will be no surprise at all if this persists until mid-March

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BRITAIN has broken the back of winter’s brutally cold weather, ­forecasters proclaimed yesterday.

January and February are now expected to be “tamer” than December, which is predicted to shatter records as the coldest since records began 100 years ago, says Jonathan Powell of ­Positive Weather Solutions.

But if you are looking forward to the compensation of a good ­summer, you’re out of luck.

Mr Powell said yesterday: “We’d be naive to believe that it’s plain sailing for the remainder of winter, but it won’t be as bad again.

“The threat of disruptive snowfall remains during mid to late ­January and early February. But spring will get underway unhindered, unlike last year.

“By March we should be clear of winter’s grip.”

But he warned: “The early ­indications are that summer may not be anything special.”

The Met Office said the rest of the week will be drier and milder than recently though it will be much more dismal and grey.

After nearly a month of sub-zero temperatures and repeated snowfalls, parts of the South yesterday reached a thawing 11C. Over the next few days maximum daytime temperatures will hover between 5C and 8C.

And though temperatures may dip at the weekend, they will not plunge to the depths of recent weeks when -18.2C was recorded on Christmas Day.

On New Year’s Eve, when ­thousands will attend open-air cele­brations, temperatures should be about 0-3C, with the coldest spots in the North.

Met Office forecaster Michael Lawrence said: “From now on this winter the weather will generally be fairly benign and we are looking to get back to near ­normal temperatures.”
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