Tuesday, 7 October 2008

October forecast from Piers Corbyn

On the 16 August I had written a piece about the rain we were then enduring and I mentioned that I wasn't really keeping up to date regarding the prognostications of maverick forecaster Piers Corbyn. For those interested you can read what he thinks on his website weatheraction.com, or at least it's possible to get a very brief overview of the weather he thinks we are going to get. To get a very detailed monthly forecast from him you have to be prepared to pay for it. He once sent me a complimentary forecast, I'm not sure which month it was now, but I can't expect him to do this on a regular basis, particularly in view of my sharp criticism of him at times!

Piers is his own worst enemy - his ego makes it very difficult to admit his numerous errors, apart from which that wouldn't be good for business I suppose! He is for ever bad mouthing the Met Office and those who believe in man made global warming whereas he should be elaborating on his theory that it's the sun, stupid that drives our climate and it's nothing to do with CO2 levels.

We are well into autumn now so I've had another look at his website. The first thing to note is that the information he displays for free has got increasingly vague, he used to indicate which parts of the month would host the most significant weather events. That info is certainly not in his October 2008 summary. To tempt you to get the full forecast for the month Piers has the following on his home page: "October 2008. Unusually Cold with sleet and snow at times on frequent Northerly winds. Often foggy. Milder later... a major damaging storm." Forecasts from Piers should come with a health warning regarding their veracity. For instance if there is a light dusting of snow for a couple of days in The Cairngorms then that's evidence for the snow part of the forecast. OK I'm exaggerating a little of course but not by so much as you might think.

At the moment his October prophecies aren't looking too promising, but there's still another 24 days to go so don't give up yet. Going back to last month for a moment it will be recalled that it was very much a month of two halves - to start with it was exceptionally wet and then from mid month onward we enjoyed some lovely quiet settled weather. With Piers you very often get the feeling that the end of the world is nigh: he issued a severe weather warning on September 6. He suggested that the deluges of 5th/6th were a foretaste of worse to come from the 11th. Then "The last two days of the month should be finer". On 16th September Piers came out with an update because the blocking high was stopping the nastiness coming in off the Atlantic but his opinion was that this period of settled weather would be short lived. On the 25th he had to issue yet another update to say that the good weather would in fact continue till almost the month end.

For goodness sake Piers you are making short term forecasts now rather than the long term ones you are for ever boasting about. How can I take you seriously?

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