Met Office uninterested to investigate the causing of War Time Ice Storm 1940?

Dr. Arnd Bernaerts
4 min readJan 14, 2021


Frequently the story about the Ice Storm in January 1940 pops up in newspaper. Three year ago THE GUARDIAN runs the story on 26/01/2018: 1940 Ice Storm added to misery of war. January 1940 was coldest month on record for almost 50 years, freezing the river Thames. This year THE TIMES is earlier and published today (Jan/14/2021) a story about January 1940, titling it:

Wartime ice storm turned UK into a strange frozen world.

When two respected newspapers rise with dramatic wording the attention of its readers, the matter must be a unique meteorological event. It was definitely, as THE TIMES explains:

January 1940 was dreadfully cold. The Thames was frozen for several miles between Teddington and Sunbury, the sea froze along parts of the south coast, and the ports at Folkestone and Southampton froze solid. Then on January 27 something extraordinary happened in southern areas when it rained — the instant the rain hit anything solid it froze into a thick layer of ice.

But that happened 81 years ago (more information below), and the Met Office in the UK is still clueless, as is the entire climatology.

How can that be? The claim every day that they understand what happens with the global climate in the future, but fail completely to reasoning and explain why Europe in general (HERE), and Great Britain got an extraordinary cold January, and an Ice Storm, that went down as one of the most dramatic weather events in history. During the war data collection was in highest demand. But meteorology seems not able or willing to used them for a thorough investigation, which is particularly enjoying, because all the exceptional weather patterns in winter 1939/40 may have anthropogenic caused. Even if man only contributed a few percent, it would be completely unacceptable. Presumably contribute a lot if not all, to a winter weather that run amok. For an entire picture consult the website , for winter 1939/40 the Chapter c, section C1 to C9.

For a broader picture on January 1940 in the UK, here after the text from

The Guardian, January 26, 2018

January 1940 was the coldest month on record for almost 50 years, and would ultimately become the second coldest January of the 20th century. By the middle of the month, the river Thames in London had frozen over for the first time in six decades, while on the 21st, temperatures in mid-Wales plummeted to a record low of –23C.

But the most serious event came towards the end of the month, when a clash of mild air from the south-west and cold air from the north-east produced very heavy snowfalls, including 1.2 metres (4 ft) of snow in Sheffield. In southern Britain, rain fell instead of snow, resulting in an even greater catastrophe, as trees, telegraph and power lines were all coated with a thick layer of ice — up to 0.3 metres in some places. This was too much to bear, and many branches and lines collapsed under the sheer weight of ice. To make matters worse, it then snowed, creating even more misery for people already bearing the burden of war. Known as the 1940 Ice Storm, this goes down as one of the most dramatic weather events in history.


The UK Ice Storm in January1940 is well documented. It occurred in the fifth months since the Second World War commenced. The probability is high that warfare on land, at sea and in the air contributed significantly to the extreme cold winter condition in Europe. For decades climatology claims being able to tell us how climate is likely to work in the future, which is hardly convincing, if modern meteorology is unwilling or unable to explain an extraordinary event, as the Ice Storm eight decades ago. After all, climate change research is need foremost to understand what humans are causing or may contribute. The winter 1939/40 is an excellent field for research to make progress in this respect.