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Winter Weather in London United Kingdom

Daily high temperatures are around 48°F, rarely falling below 38°F or exceeding 57°F. The lowest daily average high temperature is 47°F on January 18.

Daily low temperatures are around 40°F, rarely falling below 30°F or exceeding 50°F. The lowest daily average low temperature is 39°F on February 7.

For reference, on July 31, the hottest day of the year, temperatures in London typically range from 60°F to 74°F, while on February 7, the coldest day of the year, they range from 39°F to 47°F.

Average High and Low Temperature in the Winter in London

Average High and Low Temperature in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb30°F30°F35°F35°F40°F40°F45°F45°F50°F50°F55°F55°F60°F60°F65°F65°FFallSpringJan 1847°FJan 1847°F39°F39°FDec 150°FDec 150°F42°F42°FFeb 2849°FFeb 2849°F40°F40°FJan 148°FJan 148°F40°F40°FFeb 147°FFeb 147°F39°F39°F
The daily average high (red line) and low (blue line) temperature, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted lines are the corresponding average perceived temperatures.

The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the hourly average winter temperatures. The horizontal axis is the day, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.

Average Hourly Temperature in the Winter in London

Average Hourly Temperature in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb12 AM12 AM2 AM2 AM4 AM4 AM6 AM6 AM8 AM8 AM10 AM10 AM12 PM12 PM2 PM2 PM4 PM4 PM6 PM6 PM8 PM8 PM10 PM10 PM12 AM12 AMFallSpringvery coldvery coldcoldcold
frigid 15°F freezing 32°F very cold 45°F cold 55°F cool 65°F comfortable 75°F warm 85°F hot 95°F sweltering
The average hourly temperature, color coded into bands. The shaded overlays indicate night and civil twilight.

Picnic Point, Washington, United States (4,774 miles away) is the far-away foreign place with temperatures most similar to London (view comparison).

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Compare London to another city:

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The winter in London experiences gradually decreasing cloud cover, with the percentage of time that the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy decreasing from 71% to 64%. The highest chance of overcast or mostly cloudy conditions is 74% on December 26.

The clearest day of the winter is February 26, with clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy conditions 36% of the time.

For reference, on December 26, the cloudiest day of the year, the chance of overcast or mostly cloudy conditions is 74%, while on July 14, the clearest day of the year, the chance of clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy skies is 58%.

Cloud Cover Categories in the Winter in London

Cloud Cover Categories in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%FallSpringJul 1458%Jul 1458%Dec 129%Dec 129%Feb 2836%Feb 2836%Jan 127%Jan 127%Feb 132%Feb 132%clearmostly clearpartly cloudymostly cloudyovercast
0% clear 20% mostly clear 40% partly cloudy 60% mostly cloudy 80% overcast 100%
The percentage of time spent in each cloud cover band, categorized by the percentage of the sky covered by clouds.

A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. In London, the chance of a wet day over the course of the winter is very rapidly decreasing, starting the season at 29% and ending it at 21%.

For reference, the year's highest daily chance of a wet day is 32% on December 29, and its lowest chance is 20% on April 27.

Probability of Precipitation in the Winter in London

Probability of Precipitation in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0%0%5%5%10%10%15%15%20%20%25%25%30%30%35%35%FallSpringDec 2932%Dec 2932%Dec 129%Dec 129%Feb 2821%Feb 2821%Feb 127%Feb 127%rain
The percentage of days in which various types of precipitation are observed, excluding trace quantities: rain alone, snow alone, and mixed (both rain and snow fell in the same day).

Rainfall

To show variation within the season and not just the monthly totals, we show the rainfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day.

The average sliding 31-day rainfall during the winter in London is decreasing, starting the season at 2.0 inches, when it rarely exceeds 3.5 inches or falls below 0.7 inches, and ending the season at 1.3 inches, when it rarely exceeds 2.4 inches or falls below 0.4 inches.

Average Monthly Rainfall in the Winter in London

Average Monthly Rainfall in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0.0 in0.0 in0.5 in0.5 in1.0 in1.0 in1.5 in1.5 in2.0 in2.0 in2.5 in2.5 in3.0 in3.0 in3.5 in3.5 in4.0 in4.0 inFallSpringDec 12.0 inDec 12.0 inFeb 281.3 inFeb 281.3 inJan 12.0 inJan 12.0 inFeb 11.6 inFeb 11.6 in
The average rainfall (solid line) accumulated over the course of a sliding 31-day period centered on the day in question, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands. The thin dotted line is the corresponding average snowfall.

Over the course of the winter in London, the length of the day is very rapidly increasing. From the start to the end of the season, the length of the day increases by 2 hours, 42 minutes, implying an average daily increase of 1 minute, 49 seconds, and weekly increase of 12 minutes, 43 seconds.

The shortest day of the winter is December 21, with 7 hours, 50 minutes of daylight and the longest day is February 28, with 10 hours, 52 minutes of daylight.

Hours of Daylight and Twilight in the Winter in London

Hours of Daylight and Twilight in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0 hr24 hr4 hr20 hr8 hr16 hr12 hr12 hr16 hr8 hr20 hr4 hr24 hr0 hrFallSpringDec 217 hr, 50 minDec 217 hr, 50 minnightnightdaydayFeb 2810 hr, 52 minFeb 2810 hr, 52 minFeb 19 hr, 12 minFeb 19 hr, 12 min
The number of hours during which the Sun is visible (black line). From bottom (most yellow) to top (most gray), the color bands indicate: full daylight, twilight (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and full night.

The latest sunrise of the winter in London is 8:06 AM on December 30 and the earliest sunrise is 1 hour, 19 minutes earlier at 6:47 AM on February 28.

The earliest sunset is 3:51 PM on December 12 and the latest sunset is 1 hour, 48 minutes later at 5:39 PM on February 28.

Daylight saving time is observed in London during 2024, but it neither starts nor ends during the winter, so the entire season is in daylight saving time.

For reference, on June 20, the longest day of the year, the Sun rises at 4:42 AM and sets 16 hours, 39 minutes later, at 9:21 PM, while on December 21, the shortest day of the year, it rises at 8:04 AM and sets 7 hours, 50 minutes later, at 3:53 PM.

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time in the Winter in London

Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight and Daylight Saving Time in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb12 AM2 AM4 AM6 AM8 AM10 AM12 PM2 PM4 PM6 PM8 PM10 PM12 AMFallSpring6:47 AM6:47 AMFeb 285:39 PMFeb 285:39 PM7:57 AM7:57 AMDec 123:51 PMDec 123:51 PM8:06 AM8:06 AMDec 304:00 PMDec 304:00 PM7:38 AM7:38 AMFeb 14:50 PMFeb 14:50 PMSolarMidnightSolarMidnightSolarNoonSunriseSunset
The solar day in the winter. From bottom to top, the black lines are the previous solar midnight, sunrise, solar noon, sunset, and the next solar midnight. The day, twilights (civil, nautical, and astronomical), and night are indicated by the color bands from yellow to gray.

The figure below presents a compact representation of the sun's elevation (the angle of the sun above the horizon) and azimuth (its compass bearing) for every hour of every day in the reporting period. The horizontal axis is the day of the year and the vertical axis is the hour of the day. For a given day and hour of that day, the background color indicates the azimuth of the sun at that moment. The black isolines are contours of constant solar elevation.

Solar Elevation and Azimuth in the Winter in London

Solar Elevation and Azimuth in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb12 AM12 AM2 AM2 AM4 AM4 AM6 AM6 AM8 AM8 AM10 AM10 AM12 PM12 PM2 PM2 PM4 PM4 PM6 PM6 PM8 PM8 PM10 PM10 PM12 AM12 AMFallSpring001001010
northeastsouthwest
Solar elevation and azimuth in the the winter of 2024. The black lines are lines of constant solar elevation (the angle of the sun above the horizon, in degrees). The background color fills indicate the azimuth (the compass bearing) of the sun. The lightly tinted areas at the boundaries of the cardinal compass points indicate the implied intermediate directions (northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest).

The figure below presents a compact representation of key lunar data for the winter of 2024. The horizontal axis is the day, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the colored areas indicate when the moon is above the horizon. The vertical gray bars (new Moons) and blue bars (full Moons) indicate key Moon phases. The label associated with each bar indicates the date and time that the phase is obtained, and the companion time labels indicate the rise and set times of the Moon for the nearest time interval in which the moon is above the horizon.

Moon Rise, Set & Phases in the Winter in London

Moon Rise, Set & Phases in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb12 AM12 AM4 AM4 AM8 AM8 AM12 PM12 PM4 PM4 PM8 PM8 PM12 AM12 AMFallSpringNov 112:48 PMNov 112:48 PMNov 159:29 PMNov 159:29 PMDec 16:22 AMDec 16:22 AMDec 159:02 AMDec 159:02 AMDec 3010:28 PMDec 3010:28 PMJan 1310:28 PMJan 1310:28 PMJan 2912:37 PMJan 2912:37 PMFeb 121:54 PMFeb 121:54 PMFeb 2812:45 AMFeb 2812:45 AMMar 146:55 AMMar 146:55 AMMar 2910:58 AMMar 2910:58 AM6:55 AM6:55 AM3:29 PM3:29 PM8:27 AM8:27 AM8:43 AM8:43 AM8:24 AM8:24 AM2:57 PM2:57 PM8:55 AM8:55 AM8:12 AM8:12 AM4:33 PM4:33 PM5:02 PM5:02 PM7:54 AM7:54 AM7:07 AM7:07 AM5:17 PM5:17 PM6:23 AM6:23 AM5:37 AM5:37 AM
The time in which the moon is above the horizon (light blue area), with new moons (dark gray lines) and full moons (blue lines) indicated. The shaded overlays indicate night and civil twilight.

We base the humidity comfort level on the dew point, as it determines whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid. Unlike temperature, which typically varies significantly between night and day, dew point tends to change more slowly, so while the temperature may drop at night, a muggy day is typically followed by a muggy night.

The chance that a given day will be muggy in London is essentially constant during the winter, remaining around 0% throughout.

For reference, on August 10, the muggiest day of the year, there are muggy conditions 0% of the time, while on January 1, the least muggy day of the year, there are muggy conditions 0% of the time.

Humidity Comfort Levels in the Winter in London

Humidity Comfort Levels in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0%0%10%10%20%20%30%30%40%40%50%50%60%60%70%70%80%80%90%90%100%100%FallSpringJan 150%Jan 150%Dec 10%Dec 10%Feb 280%Feb 280%Jan 10%Jan 10%Feb 10%Feb 10%drydrycomfortablecomfortable
dry 55°F comfortable 60°F humid 65°F muggy 70°F oppressive 75°F miserable
The percentage of time spent at various humidity comfort levels, categorized by dew point.

This section discusses the wide-area hourly average wind vector (speed and direction) at 10 meters above the ground. The wind experienced at any given location is highly dependent on local topography and other factors, and instantaneous wind speed and direction vary more widely than hourly averages.

The average hourly wind speed in London is essentially constant during the winter, remaining within 0.7 miles per hour of 12.6 miles per hour throughout.

For reference, on January 3, the windiest day of the year, the daily average wind speed is 13.3 miles per hour, while on August 2, the calmest day of the year, the daily average wind speed is 9.6 miles per hour.

The highest daily average wind speed during the winter is 13.3 miles per hour on January 3.

Average Wind Speed in the Winter in London

Average Wind Speed in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0 mph0 mph5 mph5 mph10 mph10 mph15 mph15 mph20 mph20 mphFallSpringJan 313.3 mphJan 313.3 mphDec 112.0 mphDec 112.0 mphFeb 2812.3 mphFeb 2812.3 mphFeb 112.8 mphFeb 112.8 mph
The average of mean hourly wind speeds (dark gray line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

The hourly average wind direction in London throughout the winter is predominantly from the west, with a peak proportion of 41% on December 30.

Wind Direction in the Winter in London

Wind Direction in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0%100%20%80%40%60%60%40%80%20%100%0%FallSpringwestsouthnortheast
northeastsouthwest
The percentage of hours in which the mean wind direction is from each of the four cardinal wind directions, excluding hours in which the mean wind speed is less than 1.0 mph. The lightly tinted areas at the boundaries are the percentage of hours spent in the implied intermediate directions (northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest).

Definitions of the growing season vary throughout the world, but for the purposes of this report, we define it as the longest continuous period of non-freezing temperatures (≥ 32°F) in the year (the calendar year in the Northern Hemisphere, or from July 1 until June 30 in the Southern Hemisphere).

The growing season in London typically lasts for 9.8 months (297 days), from around February 22 to around December 15, rarely starting after March 26, or ending before November 13.

The smallest chance that a given day will be within the growing season in London during the winter is 13% on January 16.

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season in the Winter in London

Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0%100%10%90%20%80%30%70%40%60%50%50%60%40%70%30%80%20%90%10%100%0%FallSpring73%Dec 173%Dec 160%Feb 2860%Feb 28Jan 123%Jan 123%Feb 120%Feb 120%90%Nov 1390%Nov 13very coldcoldcoolfreezing
frigid 15°F freezing 32°F very cold 45°F cold 55°F cool 65°F comfortable 75°F warm 85°F hot 95°F sweltering
The percentage of time spent in various temperature bands. The black line is the percentage chance that a given day is within the growing season.

Growing degree days are a measure of yearly heat accumulation used to predict plant and animal development, and defined as the integral of warmth above a base temperature, discarding any excess above a maximum temperature. In this report, we use a base of 50°F and a cap of 86°F.

The average accumulated growing degree days in London are very rapidly decreasing during the winter, decreasing by 2,256°F, from 2,284°F to 28°F, over the course of the season.

Growing Degree Days in the Winter in London

Growing Degree Days in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0°F0°F500°F500°F1,000°F1,000°F1,500°F1,500°F2,000°F2,000°F2,500°F2,500°FFallSpringDec 12,284°FDec 12,284°FFeb 2828°FFeb 2828°F
The average growing degree days accumulated over the course of the winter, with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

This section discusses the total daily incident shortwave solar energy reaching the surface of the ground over a wide area, taking full account of seasonal variations in the length of the day, the elevation of the Sun above the horizon, and absorption by clouds and other atmospheric constituents. Shortwave radiation includes visible light and ultraviolet radiation.

The average daily incident shortwave solar energy in London is increasing during the winter, rising by 1.4 kWh, from 0.8 kWh to 2.2 kWh, over the course of the season.

The lowest average daily incident shortwave solar energy during the winter is 0.6 kWh on December 25.

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy in the Winter in London

Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy in the Winter in LondonDecJanFeb0.0 kWh0.0 kWh0.5 kWh0.5 kWh1.0 kWh1.0 kWh1.5 kWh1.5 kWh2.0 kWh2.0 kWh2.5 kWh2.5 kWh3.0 kWh3.0 kWh3.5 kWh3.5 kWh4.0 kWh4.0 kWh4.5 kWh4.5 kWh5.0 kWh5.0 kWhFallSpringDec 250.6 kWhDec 250.6 kWhDec 10.8 kWhDec 10.8 kWhFeb 282.2 kWhFeb 282.2 kWhFeb 11.2 kWhFeb 11.2 kWh
The average daily shortwave solar energy reaching the ground per square meter (orange line), with 25th to 75th and 10th to 90th percentile bands.

For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of London are 51.509 deg latitude, -0.126 deg longitude, and 82 ft elevation.

The topography within 2 miles of London contains only modest variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 164 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 70 feet. Within 10 miles contains only modest variations in elevation (492 feet). Within 50 miles contains significant variations in elevation (1,027 feet).

The area within 2 miles of London is covered by artificial surfaces (96%), within 10 miles by artificial surfaces (97%), and within 50 miles by cropland (40%) and grassland (26%).

This report illustrates the typical weather in London, based on a statistical analysis of historical hourly weather reports and model reconstructions from January 1, 1980 to December 31, 2016.

Temperature and Dew Point

There are 2 weather stations near enough to contribute to our estimation of the temperature and dew point in London.

For each station, the records are corrected for the elevation difference between that station and London according to the International Standard Atmosphere , and by the relative change present in the MERRA-2 satellite-era reanalysis between the two locations.

The estimated value at London is computed as the weighted average of the individual contributions from each station, with weights proportional to the inverse of the distance between London and a given station.

The stations contributing to this reconstruction are:

To get a sense of how much these sources agree with each other, you can view a comparison of London and the stations that contribute to our estimates of its temperature history and climate. Please note that each source's contribution is adjusted for elevation and the relative change present in the MERRA-2 data.

Other Data

All data relating to the Sun's position (e.g., sunrise and sunset) are computed using astronomical formulas from the book, Astronomical Algorithms 2nd Edition , by Jean Meeus.

All other weather data, including cloud cover, precipitation, wind speed and direction, and solar flux, come from NASA's MERRA-2 Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis . This reanalysis combines a variety of wide-area measurements in a state-of-the-art global meteorological model to reconstruct the hourly history of weather throughout the world on a 50-kilometer grid.

Land Use data comes from the Global Land Cover SHARE database , published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Elevation data comes from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) , published by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Names, locations, and time zones of places and some airports come from the GeoNames Geographical Database .

Time zones for airports and weather stations are provided by AskGeo.com .

Maps are © OpenStreetMap contributors.

Disclaimer

The information on this site is provided as is, without any assurances as to its accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Weather data is prone to errors, outages, and other defects. We assume no responsibility for any decisions made on the basis of the content presented on this site.

We draw particular cautious attention to our reliance on the MERRA-2 model-based reconstructions for a number of important data series. While having the tremendous advantages of temporal and spatial completeness, these reconstructions: (1) are based on computer models that may have model-based errors, (2) are coarsely sampled on a 50 km grid and are therefore unable to reconstruct the local variations of many microclimates, and (3) have particular difficulty with the weather in some coastal areas, especially small islands.

We further caution that our travel scores are only as good as the data that underpin them, that weather conditions at any given location and time are unpredictable and variable, and that the definition of the scores reflects a particular set of preferences that may not agree with those of any particular reader.

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