High pressure dominated the UK for much of July, pushing any Atlantic influence, and therefore much of the rain, into the northwest and allowing temperatures to build elsewhere.

Overall, the UK saw just 56% (46.3mm) of its average rainfall for July, making it the driest July in over 20 years (with 1999 recording 46.1 mm) and continues a run of all months, bar February, being drier than average in 2022 so far.

Driest in the south and east 

Rainfall has not been distributed evenly in July, as is often the case in the UK, though the contrast has been more stark than usual.

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England had just 35% (23.1mm) of its average rainfall for the month, Wales 53% (52mm), Northern Ireland 51% (45.8mm) and Scotland topped the billing with 81% (83.6mm).

Regions in the south and east were especially dry, with southern England reporting its driest July on record in a series that goes back to 1836, with 10.5mm of rain, which is just 17% of its average rainfall. In addition, 13 counties across southern and eastern England reported their driest July on record, including Hampshire, Surrey, Berkshire, Dorset and Kent.

dry july stats 1

Northern Scotland received 98% (99.4mm) of its July rainfall, with this being the only place you could find rainfall totals modestly above their long-term averages for a few regions.

Dr Mark McCarthy of the National Climate Information Centre said: “July 2022 has been a significantly dry month for Southern England, only 10.5mm of rain has been provisionally recorded on average, less than the previous record of 10.9mm set in 1911. The dominant weather pattern for the month has only allowed interludes of rain into northern areas of the UK, with areas further south largely getting any rainfall from isolated and fleeting showers in a month that will ultimately be remembered for extreme heat.”