The Long Drought - 1890 to 1910

 

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Litchfield Mercury, Friday 15th February 1895, page 6.

Litchfield Mercury, Friday 15th February 1895, page 6.

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Weather

Rivers

Groundwater

Newspapers

Weather

A ‘long drought’, yes, though with some wetter interludes, most notably 1903. The years 1901, 1902, 1904 and 1905 were particularly dry, but 1903 was one of the wettest years witnessed.

 

 

Rivers

Over 20 years, the Long Drought showed periods of low flows across much of the country at both long and short accumulation periods. For SSI-12, there was often with coherency in conditions across southern England and Wales, reducing further north, whilst at for SSI-3, certain periods show national scale coherency in conditions (such as early 1892 and autumn 1892 and in 1905), but in general extreme and severe low flows tended not to occur simultaneously across regions. Extreme flow deficits were seen across Scotland and Northern Ireland in 1895 for both SSI-12 and SSI-3 and with mild drought in northern England but wetter than average conditions in the rest of England. With the exception of 1905, regions in northern England have a lack of extreme low flows in this period whilst in the rest of England, several periods of extreme low flows can be seen throughout the Long Drought. More periods of severe and extreme low flows can be seen in for SSI-3 throughout the Long Drought than for SSI-12, particularly the early 1890s and 1909. Although positive values of SSI are not coloured on the heat maps, high flows were coherently seen across the UK in 1903-1904 followed by extreme low flows in 1905 across the UK for both accumulation periods and was also preceded by severe low flows in regions of southern England for SSI-12. Throughout the 20-year Long Drought period, 1081 events were extracted from the SSI-12 series and 727 events from the SSI-3 series across all LFBN catchments, with most of these ranking outside the top 10, particularly for mean deficit and maximum intensity (SSI-12) and for SSI-3 ranking outside of the top 10 for all characteristics.

 

Groundwater

The period known as the ‘Long Drought’ between 1890 and 1910 included periods of groundwater drought, but due to very limited observations at the time and uncertainties in the reconstructed groundwater level hydrographs it is difficult to assess the spatial and temporal variations in the groundwater drought. However, it is clear comparing the groundwater level hydrograph for Chilgrove House with that of Dalton Holme for the period 1890-1910 that the southern Chalk was affected by drought, particularly during 1891 -1893, 1898, and 1901-1902, whereas the northern Chalk aquifer in the vicinity of Dalton Holme was affected in 1904-1906.

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Newspapers

 

Litchfield Mercury, Friday 15th February 1895, page 6.

St James Gazette, 18th September 1893, page 15.

 
 

Edinburgh Evening News, 13th September 1895, page 2.

Edinburgh Evening News, 13th September 1895, page 2.

 
 

Edinburgh Evening News, 13th September 1895, page 2.

The Leeds Times, 23rd June 1893, page 3.

 
 

The Leeds Times, 23rd June 1893, page 3.

The Leeds Times, 23rd June 1893, page 3.