Betting on snow at christmas

White Christmas anyone?

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Nottingham in the snow 2010

White Christmas brings to mind two things – a great film (the best Christmas film ever in my opinion), and Christmas card pictures created by the weather. Everyone hopes for a ‘proper’ white Christmas, but if you can’t go to the mountains of Europe to find it, what are the chances at home?

Interestingly a lot depends on just how you classify a ‘white’ Christmas. The judge in all things white in the UK at Christmas is the Met Office, so how do they decide?

They classify ‘snow at Christmas’ as a single snowflake falling on the Met Office headquarters in Exeter or on the roof of the BBC in London over the 24 hours that make up the 25th December. It is this ‘official’ record that people normally bet on either happening or not. And surprisingly it is more common than you might expect. This criteria has been met 38 times in the last 51 years! That is an almost 75% success rate.

However, if we are talking lying snow on the ground at Christmas, this is actually much less common than you might think. Obviously we had this last year – but this was only the fourth time in 51 years!

Certainly the forecast for Christmas as it stands at the moment is not likely to give us a 5th one this year!