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Average rainfall in the United Kingdom (UK) 2001-2020

Between 2001 and 2019, the average rainfall in the United Kingdom varied greatly. In 2010, rainfall dropped to a low of 1,020 millimeters, which was a noticeable decrease when compared to the previous year. However, the following year rainfall increased significantly to a peak of 1,889 millimeters. During this period rainfall rarely rose above 1,500 millimeters. In 2019, the annual average rainfall in the UK reached 1,392 millimeters.

Monthly rainfall

On average, rainfall was most common at the start and end of the year. From 2014 to 2019, monthly rainfall peaked in December 2015 at approximately 219 millimeters. This was the only time during this period that the average monthly rainfall rose above 200 millimeters. This was a deviation from December’s 10-year mean of more than 150 millimeters.

Rainfall highest in Scotland

In the UK, rain is often concentrated around mountainous regions such as the Scottish Highlands, so it is no surprise to see that on average it is Scotland that receives the most rainfall annually. In 2011, the average rainfall in Scotland amounted to approximately 1,886 millimeters. Geographically it is the north and west of the UK that receives the lion's share of rain as it is more susceptible to rainfall coming in from the Atlantic.

Average annual rainfall in the United Kingdom (UK) from 2001 to 2020

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Sources

Release date

January 2021

Region

United Kingdom

Survey time period

2001 to 2020

Supplementary notes

*Provisional data.

Average rainfall in the UK was calculated by aggregating regional rainfall data and weighted based on each regions share of hydro-electricity generating capacity.

Prior to 2016 data was published by Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC). Following Theresa May's appointment as Prime Minister in July 2016, the department was remodeled into Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), which has since published the data.

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Statistics on "Weather in the UK"

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