Eastbourne, East Sussex

Posted: October 3, 2012 by tchannon in Analysis, Surfacestation

Spot the Stevenson screen.

No? Make it easy

Image Image Image Image

(rightmost image especially for Anthony Watts on his amusing theory about air conditioners being attracted to thermometers; some tour coaches which wait just by are air conditioned, much larger systems)

Image Image

Left earlier site, right later site (monochrome to hide poor colour)

Eastbourne, West Sussex

This site holds 4 national highest temperature records

Site 1 50.76226907191589,0.2837653986471778
Site 2 50.76219348234491,0.283898249165464 (move 2007)
Altitude 9 metres

Earlier site estimated Class 4 excluding shadow problems. Fails Class 3 on hardstanding area, where I am including fences, raised flower beds and shrubs.

Later site estimated Class 4 excluding shadow problems, which are more severe. Close by building is sunside and adds shelters from the wind.

Shadows, consider the height of the camera on the Google camera car (possibly a GM Astra, maybe 3 metres above the road), 7 or 20 degrees? Then there are tall guest houses.

UHI, it is coastal, ought to be warm in this part of the country just over the channel from France. Sea is about 350 metres east so the screen is sheltered from easterly off the sea or sea breezes, buildings today in all other directions.


Highest daily minimum temperature records — England

April 15.2 °C 23 April 2011 Eastbourne (East Sussex)
(above is post site move with new electricity substation)
November 15.9 °C 3 November 2005 Eastbourne (East Sussex)

Highest daily minimum temperature records — United Kingdom

April 15.2 °C
= 15 April 2007 Inverailort (Highland)
= 23 April 2011 Eastbourne (East Sussex) (ditto substation)

November 15.9 °C 3 November 2005 Eastbourne (East Sussex)

None of those are trustworthy.

Where do I start?

Lets take an easy one first, the new electricity substation.

Eastbourne government planning database (planning reference EB/2006/0218)


Extract from planning documents. Barely legible. Square on right says
“Weather station to be relocated by EBC” which I assume is Eastbourne Borough Council. This means the company and the council were aware of the problem. Drawing is dated 25th May 2007 so both bodies knew before that and can be assumed to have discussed the matter.

The drawing also identifies

  • Southern Water { unreadable }
  • Coach tour offices

The semi underground building the other end of the site, abutted to the raised roadway with ventilation door louvres seems to be an existing substation. How long has that been there?

New substation

This is mentioned as connecting into an existing 11kV circuit, specified at design load of 500kVA, output will be 415V 3 phase, for light use gives 3 x 240V for light industrial, office and domestic. Not my field, look it up anyway, a good transformer for that usage has an idle loss of 1.1kW (may well be higher, I suspect price rules) and full load 5.5kW, less than 2% loss.
This is minor.

Idle losses vary with detail design, load power factor and balance, gets into a subject, magnetics, where I have been involved, fascinating subject.

Fair amount of underground cabling shown on one of the drawings. This ought not to dissipate much but I’ve known the ground hot without an actual fault, very much doubt it in this case. Assuming the other site building is more extensive, feeding most of the buildings thereabouts, the overall losses might go >10kW but this is still not enough to do a great deal on general temperature. The roof of the second plant room receives 1kW sqm solar in full sun, the roads, roofs, much more but mostly further away.

At night or in the winter it is a different situation. A lot of thermal mass around too, site will never get as cold as it should. Huge thermal mass around and has increased over time.

Met site exposure is awful, in effect in a hole. (so is Inverailort and others)


Reason for development.

The plans label “Cultural Centre”. A more general plan, also barely legible, reveals an extension to the theatre “proposed site” and also proposed “art store and workshop”

Google Streetview reveals a new trench crossing the road and telltale curbstone, image right, click for larger.Is also visible in aerial image. Image

Site changes longer term

I do not know the met site location changes over time but I have worked out all that matters about the current location.

Maps from 1898 through 1931 show this to be the case and I was right in what I guessed has happened.


Copyright, courtesy of mapseeker.co.uk [1]

Site is the green triangle bottom left of Devonshire Park. Carlise Road went straight past, today the original route of Carlise road is blocked completely changing the road dominance and in the process steals the hypotenuse, shrinking the grass area. A hint exists of a small roundabout junction Carlisle Road / College Road probably


Something like this.

It was also more open toward Devonshire Park where there are buildings and developments, is also the site of the Bournemouth tennis tournament. A lot of photos on the ‘web.


(c) Julian Osley [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Met station is roughly behind you.

I hazard a guess the utility services were dug into the island some time ago and then grew one by one.

Since the Google images yet more government works have taken place (photos exist), it is a mess.

Met station

This is yet another site with close in metal fencing although sparse.

The met station itself uses manually read min/max. There is a rain gauge. The sunshine recorder is elsewhere.

Personal comment

As happens here we have a sad situation, it pains me having to reveal the foregoing. This is a met site going back into the 1800s, generations of dedicated individuals have cared for the instruments, read them come rain, wind, snow, gale yet here is recent government destroying the environment, destroying a legacy left in their care.

Met site information from Eastbourne council

The local council do have a nice page on the met station and a link to a PDF containing more but to do with the older site.



  1. 1898 map
    Copyright presumed “© Copyright 2008. E-C Plus Ltd”

We are quite happy for people to use images of maps, plans and surveys from our mapseeker site as long as the use is for non-commercial purposes.

Those running personal websites dealing with family history, genealogy, or other historical research are more than welcome to copy any of the maps plans and surveys for their own use, as are charity, educational organisations and non-profit organisations.

In return we would greatly appreciate a link back to mapseeker or a credit such as “courtesy of mapseeker.co.uk”

  1. Tenuc says:

    Good find Tim. In addition to other problems, there is heavy summer traffic, often queued back waiting to get onto the seafront. This is also a popular place for coaches to park in the summer and this could effect readings – hot exhaust, reflected sunlight/shading depending on time of day/position. UHI is a serious problem here.

  2. Bloke down the pub says:

    Eastbourne being a tourist and retirement destination, someone there might think that higher temperature readings are a good thing. Or am I just being cynical?

  3. Tenuc says:

    Just spotted it, Tim. Edit to heading of this post is needed as Eastbourne in East Sussex, not West as shown.

  4. tchannon says:

    Thanks, will change to Westbourne which ought to Brighton their day.

    [changed the title but left the wrong URL otherwise it breaks RSS and other external links, can’t do a redirect, I am blind to large things, again, was preparing that post since last week, still got it wrong]

  5. Tenuc says:

    @Tim – I call it a ‘haystack’. In a previous life I used to spend a lot my time cleaning up very large steaming piles of data – often was too busy looking for the needles… 🙂

  6. Doug Proctor says:

    I hope Watts can get his report in a “reputable, peer-reviewed” journal that has some accepted-by-warmists’ climate study credentials. Then and only then will your work get the traction it deserves. But all it has to do really is bring reasonable grounds to have the Met Office data recognized as warm-to-reality. As soon as the warmists realise they have a problem they will distance themselves from any discussion of data, going over to moral, ethical and eco-green, quasi-religious reasons to be non-fossil-fuel societies. It is only the threat of global death that has galvanized public and political support. Otherwise we are back to a Carson-Erhlich-Strong-Suzuki long-hair rant about our non-spiritual lifestyle. Which is legitimate, but not sufficient to justify carbon taxes, credits and injection schemes.

    Your review of the stations must be very annoying to the purveyors of the data. Not that they don’t understand why and what will ultimately come out of it.

    This is the thing the warmists don’t understand: all adjustments, errors, omissions and benefit of the doubt has been to the benefit of higher temperatures. Whatever is questioned leads to lower temperatures, not higher. That is a troubling situation for those who say the data proves CAGW. In any enterprise with uncertainty, some should be going both ways. If we can’t find any reason to suspect the temperatures recorded are warmer than being recorded, the direction of error correction, regardless of quantum, is obvious.

  7. Sleepalot says:

    Eastbourne doesn’t seem to be on the Surface Stations Index page.

  8. Sleepalot says:

    Is this even possible? (Eastbourne Warmest Months)
    Is This Even Possible? uses Met Office data

  9. tchannon says:

    You are right It doesn’t have a WMO ID, a number of sites don’t and are not in web page created here automatically from the WMO synoptic station list for the UK. (run script, copy result into the WordPress editor)

    Synoptics are in essence the primary stations. I’ve done a few oddments. Eventually this will be sorted out, lot of loose ends.

    I was going to put together a full list with other details, has to be done by hand.

    The Met Office web site has serious Accessibility issues, the new site is broken and they are removing the old. Good luck.

  10. Sleepalot says:

    Compared to you guys, I’m just a donkey. You want a url list for the stations you’ve done? I can do that.

  11. tchannon says:

    Think I’ve now remembered why I left things untidy. Hit the usual wall of everything-is-broken, all-exits-blocked, have to find a workaround.

    The intention was “normal form”
    — single page which is a list of station names, ID, with a single link to more on a station

    — one page per station containing basic details and a list of links to blog articles, blog pages, cross links all to do with the station

    There are >150 stations so far and that means creating >150 pages. Unfortunately there are no offline tools which actually work for WordPress Pages, nor is the API sensibly accessible (for me),

    Maybe this was too ambitious given the dismal state of reality.

  12. Sleepalot says:

    The way I see it, the job’s almost done (and a marvelous job you’ve done, too): the point (aiui) was to find the stations (I’ve found url’s for 166) and assess their quality. So what you need now is a “conclusion” article that brings all those individual assessments together in one place, to give an overall view of the UK network.