Weather analysis: How bad was the 2015 Scottish summer?

Play was suspended due to heavy rain ahead at this summer's Open Championship. Picture: Jane Barlow
Play was suspended due to heavy rain ahead at this summer's Open Championship. Picture: Jane Barlow
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SCOTS complain about it every year and 2015 was no different, but just how bad was the summer weather this year?

Scotland is not known for glorious summer days however it does get them, albeit not as frequently as most Scots would like.

Map dispalying amount of rainfall in the UK this summer and how that compares to histroical average. Picture: Met Office

Map dispalying amount of rainfall in the UK this summer and how that compares to histroical average. Picture: Met Office

To find out how the months of June, July and August this year compared with other years the best indicators to examine are whether the level of rainfall and sunshine duration has increased or decreased compared to previous years.

Using data from the Met Office it can be determined if this summer was wetter than average or if actually, there was nothing to really moan about.

A quick glance at the Met Office rainfall map reveals that for much of Scotland this was a particularly damp summer. Specifically, the rainfall levels in some parts of Aberdeenshire in the north east and Argyll & Bute in the west were 150 per cent higher than historical levels from 1981-2010.

Glasgow also recorded higher level of rainfall from June-August this year with 110-130 per cent increase.

Map showing hours of sunlight in the UK this summer and how that compares to histroical average. Picture: Met Office

Map showing hours of sunlight in the UK this summer and how that compares to histroical average. Picture: Met Office

Conversely in the east of the central belt, rainfall reached only average levels with some areas around Edinburgh receiving lower rainfall than the 29 year norm.

Small areas of the Highlands such as Durness in the north west corner of the mainland and Gairloch bucked the west coast trend and recorded below average rainfall.

Clearly it was a wet summer but what about that all important sunshine? When the rain stopped was Scotland bathed in sunlight?

To some extent, yes.

As we can see from the duration of sunshine Scotland experienced this summer, some of the rainiest areas saw a rise in sunlight levels that took them above historical averages.

Aberdeenshire which was lashed by rain through June, July and August was also one of the few areas which experienced higher levels of sunshine than the region’s average.

Glasgow too, often infamous for its levels of rain, received a slightly higher amount of sunshine than it historically gets, as did surrounding council areas like East and West Dumbartonshire.

Dumfries and Galloway and areas of the borders received levels of sunlight as low as 75% of the usual average.

But the real losers this summer were the Highlands and Western Isles. Much less sunshine than usual coupled with higher levels of rainfall means they really have had a grim summer when it comes to weather.

Verdict: Edinburgh comes off the best with a fairly average summer. For the remaining cities of Aberdeen, Dundee, Glasgow, Perth and Inverness the rain may have dampened many spirits. In terms of weather it was a mediocre summer to forget.