UK weather: Autumn starts today (in the weather calendar, at least)

 
Catherine Neilan
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Autumn is here (Source: Getty)
It certainly feels like autumn out there. So it should perhaps come as no surprise that today is the official start of the new season – as far as weather is concerned.
While the autumn equinox happens on 22-23 September, meteorologists are already buttoning up for a drop in temperatures, darker mornings, brown leaves and more rain.
However even the UK's top weather forecasters have admitted it's been a pretty soggy summer, thanks to the Spanish Plume – periods of heavy rain coming in from the south.
The Met Office's chief scientist professor dame Julia Slingo OBE said there had been “some big changes in the global climate this year”, noting that El NiƱo is “in full flight, disturbing weather patterns around the world”.
While forecasting has improved, Slingo admitted that “all the leading models around the world failed to capture the signal for unsettled weather over the UK”.
“Forecasting months and seasons ahead is still in its infancy and much more research needs to be done,” she said. “On the other hand our day-to-day forecasts have been really successful in allowing us to warn of bad weather... our five-day forecast is now as accurate as our one-day forecast was when I started my career.”

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