Weather forecaster looks ahead for West Cork

Posted on: 3rd November, 2014

Category: Features

Contributor: West Cork People

Ken Ring of is author of the Weather Almanacs for Ireland for 2015. The following is extracted from his 2014 and 2015 books.

November for the Cork region brings on/off again rain with stronger winds between November 12 and 17, but mild temperatures; with the last couple of days bringing the first chance of subzeros for the season. With precipitation may come snow or cold rain around November 22, but snowfalls, if any, should be light. For most, the first snow of the season may be around the last two days in November.

December is dull and wet and with possible snowfalls in the first week, and around December 17. Christmas may see the peppering of white on hills and roofs beforehand, but mostly Christmas Day may be dry but the coldest since the first week in December. Most snow in southwest counties could be in the first half of December.

January is mostly cold and unusually dry for the first half. The first twenty days may see only very light flurry days but mostly dry skies, with the coolest period being around January 8. After January 20, the daytime temperatures get milder, at times even reaching around 14C.  The last week may bring some heavy rain at times.

February’s first ten days are mainly cold and dull, with about three rain days. The windiest time of the year may be in second half of February and first half March, and that will be because the highest tides of the year are in February and March.

The probability is that we are not facing a particularly harsh winter. The brunt of winter will mainly be the first half of December, and during January up until January 20. Daytime temps should get back to being regularly over 10C from mid February. Mid winter may be milder but wetter and windier in the last ten days of February, developing into more chances of wintry weather in the first week of March, although an absence of subzeros may bring hail then rather than snow.

Although the first half of March brings more precipitation, the coolest mornings may be in the third week, and only a couple of subzero minimums that would be able to produce snow. Overnight freezing is mostly gone by March 20 and over the final 10 days the region may see only light showers.

Summer-like dryness and milder day and overnight temperatures kick in and run from the second week in April to the first week in May. The best time for holidays is June 4 to 12. Put a ring around that in the calendar as the best opportunity to take your summer break.

Closeness of perigees (days of closest earth-moon distance per month) affects the strength of the Gulf Stream. In 2013, the most powerful perigee for the year, coupled with the moon at southern declination in the last week of June, caused record high sea surface temperatures early in summer and as expected brought a heat wave on 9 July.

But in 2014 the closer perigees occurred in August together with a northern declination moon, bringing warmth and rain, and in September a southern declination moon that brought sunshine and settled conditions. In 2015, the closest perigee will happen near the end of September and will accompany a full and northward trekking moon. As a result September should be windy at times, wet and mild.

Overall, 2015 may be a warmer than average year. This method of longrange forecasting looks at trends that appeared in approximately equivalent years in the past. If we average sun and moon years we arrive at 1957-9 as being the most similar year in trends to 2015 (three moon cycles ago). Other similar years have been 1988 and 1977.

Weather tends to repeat each 9-11 years and 18-20years, which are an amalgam of lunar and solar factors. But although the sun’s orbit averages 11 years, there is fluctuation between 9-14 solar years to achieve this. There is often a 36-38-year turnabout, for instance 1975 saw the hottest summer in Ulster for 150 years. Other hot summers have been 1976, 2006 and 1995, which have been multiple years of the lunar and solar model (1995+11=2006, and 1976+37=2013)

The moon provides the timing of weather events and the sun provides amounts of heat and evaporation, which determine amounts of rain that fall. Of the two, the moon is more reliable, and despite the scepticism of mainstream forecasters, our observation is that lunar factors constitute 80-85 per cent of weather.

For more detail about what is coming for each county for 2015, Ken’s almanac is available from his website or from Amazon.

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This Saturday the 10th March, will see some magically curious activity as local Bandon national schools compete in a Wizarding Harry Potter Quiz. The prize will be the beautiful Bandon Banshee Perpetual Cup.

As any Harry Potter enthusiast knows, Bandon has the unique honour of having a character named after the town. The Bandon Banshee, was referred to as the nemesis of Gilderoy Lockhart in the Chamber of Secrets. The book grossed €60 million in sales and was the 7th highest earning film of all time.

Locals, looking to enhance the town for young people, saw the quiz as an ideal way promote the connection. The universally absorbing book series brings young readers on a huge adventure of magic, adversity and triumph. It is also an exploration of loyalty and friendship, good and evil – so it is not only popular way to engage young people, it is a hugely positive connection.

Zoe Tennyson, one of the organisers said they were delighted with the response from schools who ran a qualifying quiz as part of World Book Day. On Saturday Bandon Town Hall will be transformed into Hogwarts Great Hall, with proceeds going Bandon Playground Group, and to cover costs of the event.

Bandon Books will be rewarding the winning team with vouchers to each of the five members. The Bandon Banshee, or Bean-sidhe na Bandaan Perpetual Cup will be hotly contested – but which school will the Banshee go to??

If you have any questions please call Marguerite McQuaid on 087 900 9494
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8th March, 2018  ·  

Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition 23 February 2018

The inaugural Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition will take place in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen this Friday 23rd February. As part of Engineers Week 2018, leaders and members of Ballineen Foróige Club have organised an exhibition which will showcase a diverse and exciting range of engineering projects that have been undertaken by members of the club over the last few weeks, with the aid of leaders and a number of local engineers.

With the aid of local pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, along with the support of STEAM Education, a UCC based company focused on promoting science, technology, engineering, arts, and maths subjects in primary schools, Ballineen Foróige has been engaging members and leaders in all things engineering over the last six weeks. From researching, designing, and prototyping a project based on local problems, to participating in various workshops on coding and careers in engineering, Ballineen Foróige have been extremely busy in preparation for the exhibition this coming Friday night.

On the night itself, Michael Loftus, Head of Engineering at CIT, Fintan Goold, Manager at Eli Lilly and All-Ireland Cork winning Footballer, along with Geraldine Coughlan of GCA Architects & Designers, a local business, will act as judges on the night, evaluating the different engineering projects and offering some advice to the members of the club. Also in attendance will be the CEO of Foróige Seán Campbell, along with a number of local councillors, TD’s and Senators.

Leading the team of Ballineen Foróige leaders organising the event, is Rebecca Dwyer, a bioprocess engineer at Eli Lilly. Rebecca recently became a leader in the club and says that Ballineen Foróige Young Engineer Exhibition 2018 “promises to be a fun, challenging and rewarding experience for all involved and we look forward to welcoming parents, relatives, friends and members of the public to the exhibition and film screening on the evening of Friday 23rd February.” Overall, there are twelve projects entered in the exhibition. One project, led by Cian Kennefick and Charlie Nolan, members of the starting out club, examines the possibility of installing speed ramps on the road near local primary school. Fourteen-year-old Charlie says he got involved in the project as it was something to do and it gets you thinking. Cian says the most exciting part of the project was the building of the prototypes.

Both Cian and Charlie, along with thirty other members of the club will display their projects this coming Friday 23 February in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen. Doors open at 8pm and the event runs until 10pm. All are welcome to attend, and admission is free. Catering, including tea and coffee, will be provided on the night.
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20th February, 2018  ·  

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17th February, 2018  ·  

Check out this new upbeat indie-folk track Edges, released today from Inni-K with a video by Myles O'Reilly. Inni-K will be performing at Levis’, Ballydehob on Saturday 24th February, with support from Sam Clague.
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