April in Ely sets new records

APRIL was among the coldest and wettest ever recorded in Ely, according to figures from local weather stations.

Ely meteorologist Gerlad Rolfe said that, according to his records, it was the coldest April since 1989 and the second wettest on record, making for a truly miserable month.

Speaking to the Ely Standard, he said: “Typically you would expect to see about 40mm of rain as an average in a month but as of 9am on May 1 we had 98.3mm, which was second only to the 145mm we saw in 1998.

“In terms of temperature we saw an average daytime max of about 13 degrees which is the coldest it has been since 1989. I think it is fair to say that those who have been wanting a rainy month have had one, and a little bit more!”

Mr Rolfe added that although he could see why Anglian Water had opted to impose a hosepipe ban, he felt that the issue was more complicated than there simply having been a few months where rainfall has been less than expected.

A spokesman for Anglian Water said: Obviously the rain is very welcome news and it has made some difference to the surface water levels in reservoirs in the western part of the region.

“We have made the situation at the weekend but the problem we have got is that we are starting from such a low level. We are still way off where we would want to be at the end of April.”

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According to the Met Office, April saw more than 120mm of rain on average across the UK - significantly more than the national 69.6mm average normally expected for the month and beating the previous record of 120.3mm set in 2000.

A spokesman for the Environment Agency said: “It has been a very wet week across England and Wales, with especially heavy rainfall in southern England. Our South East and South West Regions received 42mm and 55mm of rainfall respectively.

“As a result soil moisture deficits have decreased in all our regions. River flows are now normal for the time of year at over half our indicator sites. But groundwater levels remain low, with fourteen sites now exceptionally low for the time of year.

“The recent rain has been good for farmers and gardeners and the cool temperatures have eased the pressure on fish and wildlife in rivers. But as we move from spring to summer, most of the rain that falls either evaporates as temperatures rise or is taken up by plants as they grow.”