England is on average the driest country in the United Kingdom. The word dry and England unfortunately are well known antonyms. In 2022, the country recorded annual rainfall of 778.3 mm. And with 2023 having almost 172 days of rain -which is nearly half the year - it seems almost that we here as the people of Wallington have accepted this gloomy and sullen series of weather patterns for what it is. 

It is not London’s, England’s or the UK’s fault that we experience this much rain. After all, we are at the epicentre of 5 air masses. What are air masses though ? In simple terms, an air mass is a large volume of air which travels from one area to another. An air mass is a large body of air - usually thousands of kilometres wide. There is one cause of the frequent rainfall we experience. The maritime air mass.


The maritime air masses travel over the sea which makes them wet. Originating in the warm waters of the tropics and Gulf of Mexico, where heat and moisture are transferred to the overlying air from the waters below. The northward movement of tropical air masses transports warm moist air over the Atlantic ocean where it gains moisture through evaporating water and eventually , carried by westerly winds, reaches the UK and finally London.

However it is not only rain England is continuously purged by, it is the cold and bitter winds. I myself have not seemed to be able to see through a single cricket match without the wind suddenly halting the flow of play. The polar continental air mass is the reason for this. Originating in near Canada and Alaska the air mass is responsible for bringing cold winds to the UK and is often one of the larger air masses that affect the UK’s weather.

So when you see it pouring down outside, just know it’s not just a few grey clouds or a windy day but a clash of air masses and the consequences of it.