Record heat in March... now here comes snow

Large parts of Ireland enjoyed their warmest March in more than half a century, forecasters have confirmed.

But, underlining the reason for Ireland’s erratic weather reputation, the country is set to be given a weather wake-up call this week with hail, sleet and even snow replacing the early summer sun.

Met Éireann last night confirmed that despite record-breaking March heat last week, wintry conditions will return today and last until Thursday, bringing with it temperatures of just 3-9C.

The change is due to a band of cloud coming from the north and is followed by “extremely cold north easterly winds”.

It comes just a week after an unseasonable temperature surge broke records at weather stations in Mayo and Cork.

Temperatures at Belmullet in Co Mayo, Valentia Observatory in Co Kerry, Malin Head in Co Donegal, and Phoenix Park in Dublin were the warmest in more than 50 years for the time of year.

Other stations around the country reported their highest average March temperatures in between 14 to 22 years, while most stations saw the highest maximums since 1965.

The mercury soared to 22.2C at Belmullet, the highest since its weather station opened in 1956, while Cork Airport basked in 18.8C heat, the warmest March since 1962.

Low rainfalls also resulted in areas like Mullingar witnessing its driest March in 51 years.

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