Page:Item 7 1858.pdf/19

From Historical Hastings
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also remarkably dry; yet, instead of there being rain only on the 20th, there were slight showers within the 24 hours of the 5th, 6th, 7th, 16th, 17th, 19th and (larger quantity) on the 20th. “An occasional slight fog, but dry atmosphere” said the Doctor; and here again he was decidedly inaccurate, both months being as remarkable for the number of foggy days and nights as for their mildness. During November, fog (more or less) prevailed on the 3rd, 6th (with lightning), 7th, 8th (very dense), 9th, 13th, 14th, 20th, 21st, 23rd and 26th. In December, also, fog was prevalent on the 7th, 8th, 12th, 26th and 30th. These instances and hundreds of others which the compiler of this History has recorded entirely controvert the notion that Hastings is always free from fog, albeit its fogs are not of that smoky, sooty, and unwholesome condition which applies to the fogs of London and some other places. Fogs usually make their appearance with calms and a high barometric and thermometric register, and such was the case in the months of November and December 1857. The last named month had a temperature that was 7 degrees above the average, as before stated, which was even a greater excess than that of November. But, mild, and even warm, as the weather was at Hastings during November and December, it was equally so in other parts of the country, and our own locality was by no means exceptional in the growing of strawberries and the budding of flowers, as Dr. Garrett’s letter to the Times endeavours to show. In the Gateshead Observer was a paragraph which stated “A plate of raspberries was gathered on Christmas Day in the open air in the garden of Mr. John Wood of Kingsthorpe near Northampton. In our own more northern county of Durham we hear of birds that have built their nests in the hedgerows, and an old farmer, who had four ploughs at work on the 28th of December, said his land was in April order. Pansies and polyanthuses are reported by our Sunderland Correspondent to be in full blow. On the 29th wild strawberries were gathered between Shildon and Sedgefield. Roses and woodbines are ready to blow”. The Times, also of Jan. 2nd, said “After an unprecedented season of mild weather at this period of the year, during which flowers have bloomed in the open air, and birds have carolled as in Spring, a sharp frost has set in”. The frosts, however, even in January, were intermittent, and the month upon the whole was about 2 degrees above the average temperature. But, as is usually the case after mild winters, February and March were very cold months, the former having over twenty frosty nights, and the temperature of both months was 3 or 4 degrees below the mean of such months. I sought to point out to Dr. Garrett his misconception by showing him my own almost hourly record and the daily accounts obtained from other districts. He told me the source from which he drew his inference, -