Soggy start to week in South Shields and South Tyneside as autumn equinox approaches
It was a soggy start to the week as South Tyneside awoke to heavy rain on Monday morning.
The wet weather dried up and brooding skies brightened a little later in the day, but, on the eve of the autumn equinox, it was a sign that summer was finally over after what had been a warm weekend.
And the weather doesn’t look like it’s going to get much better on Tuesday, with the Met Office forecasting more showers in South Tyneside – and temperatures no warmer than 14°C.
The agency’s forecast for the North East reads: “Bright start then clouding over with showers or longer spells of rain on Tuesday. A breezy day and continuing to feel much cooler than of late. Maximum temperature 14 °C.”
The outlook for the rest of the week is for windy but bright conditions on Wednesday with rain clearing in the east.
More showers spreading eastwards are expected on Thursday and Friday, but with some bright spells.
Temperatures are expected to be near or slightly below average for the time of year, with Thursday looking the warmest day with temperatures forecast to be up to 17°C.
The equinox on or around September 22 each year marks the beginning of autumn according to the natural, astronomical calendar.
However, the meteorological calendar has autumn beginning on September 1 and ending on November 30.
This is to make it easier for weather researchers to accurately explore data, since natural seasons vary in length and can start and end on different days each year.
The Met Office website states: “During the autumn equinox, the sun shines directly on the equator and day and night around the globe are of almost equal length - a day and night of roughly 12 hours each.
“Autumn has been significant in many cultures throughout history and even today many festivals and events around the globe occur around the autumn equinox, for example, the Moon Festival in China or Michaelmas in the UK.
"Autumn is normally associated with dropping temperatures and the nights drawing in as winter approaches. In the UK autumn can often bring unsettled weather and towards the latter part of the season can often bring stormy conditions with strong gales due to Atlantic depressions moving over the UK.”