Weather data

Weather this month in Reading

The weather of Reading in March

March in Reading marks the transition from winter to spring, and the weather can be either a continuation of winter with frost and snow, or heralding spring with sunshine and early spring warmth. Average daytime temperatures range from just below 10 ºC during the first five days to above 12 ºC at the end of the month. Average night minimum temperatures slowly rise from about 2 ºC at the start of the month to about 5 ºC at the end of the month. The average temperature for the month is 7.4 ºC. The highest March temperature on record at London Road during 1908-1967 was 22.8 ºC on 29 March 1965 while at the slightly cooler Whiteknights site a temperature of 22.5 ºC was reached in 2021. But maximum temperatures in March can fail to rise above freezing point with -0.6 ºC on 6 March 1942 and -0.9 ºC on 1 March 2018.

Night minimum air temperatures have been as low as -11.3 ºC in March (7 March 1947) towards the end of a remarkable cold spell of weather that had persisted for much of the time since mid-January. March 1917 was the coldest March in the record (average temperature 3.4 ºC) while the warmest was in 2017 (9.6 ºC). Sharp ground frosts can be a problem for gardeners in March. At Whiteknights, grass minimum temperatures below -13 ºC have been recorded in March as late as the 20th in 1985 (-13.2 ºC) and the 22nd in 1980 (-13.1 ºC).

The monthly mean rainfall for March in Reading amounts to about 40 mm, with as much as half to three-quarters of that amount falling on a single day in some years. Only a small amount of this falls as snow. The wettest March (1916) saw 123 mm falling, while in 1929 just 1.3 mm fell (with just a trace of rain in the first 20 days and then no rainfall in the final five days). The wettest day in March in the period 1908-2020 saw a fall of 34.5 mm on 14 March 1964. The duration of bright sunshine in March averages out at almost 118 hours with between 5 and 6 days being sunless. Sunshine totals in March have ranged from 179 hours in 2007 to under 57 hours in 1992.

During 1968-2020 there were 18 March months without any snowfall; many falls of sleet or snow tend to be slight. In March 1970 snowfall was observed on 9 days while 11 days of snowfall were observed in March 1937 and March 2013. Nowadays lying snow (covering more than half the ground) rarely occurs on more than one morning in March. Noteworthy snow depths in March have included 20 cm on 4 March 1965. Fog occurs on about one morning each March on average. However, in 1942 and 1969 fog was observed on 7 mornings while in 2012 fog was noted on 8 mornings. In 1969 much of this fog coincided with a long sunless spell while in 2012 the fog usually cleared to give sunny periods during the day. The peak wind gust on record during March is one of 66 knots (34 m/s) on 24 March 1986.

All averages refer to the period 1991-2020 unless otherwise stated.

Statistics last updated 1 August 2022.

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