White Christmas? Weather experts place their bets

Yahoo Lifestyle
19 December 2012

If you’re dreaming of a white Christmas this year - just like the ones you used to know...think again.

Bookie Ladbrokes has slashed the odds of it snowing in London on Christmas Day from 6/1 to 10/1. The odds of it snowing in Birmingham or Cardiff have been placed slightly higher at 7/1.

Not only is it unlikely to snow in the UK but there’s an 8/1 chance we’ll have the wettest Christmas on record.

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"Let it rain, let it rain, let it rain. It doesn't quite have the same ring to it but we'll be glad for a wet Christmas rather than a white one as it will save us from the most expensive payout in history,” said Jessica Bridge of Ladbrokes.

It seems the place where you’re more likely to see snow however is Scotland, with Ladbrokes betting the chance of a White Christmas in Edinburgh as 5/2.

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“The only place which might see snow would be over the Scottish mountains,” Helen Chivers from the Met Office told Yahoo! Lifestyle.

“[In England], the unsettled and mild weather is set to continue up to and including Christmas Day.

“I would expect the day to be bright with a mixture of sunshine and showers in most places,” she added.

Betting rules state that in order for it to be classified a White Christmas, ‘one flake of snow [must] fall on Met office monitoring stations over the 24 hr period of the 25th of December'.

Snow has fallen on Christmas Day 38 times in the last 52 years but widespread covering of snow on the ground has been reported just four times in the last 51 years, according to the Met Office.

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The last White Christmas in the UK was in 2010 when there was snow on the ground at 83 per cent of stations - the highest amount ever recorded. Snow or sleet also fell on December 25th at 19 per cent of the stations.

A white Christmas was more common before 1752, when the calendar was changed and Christmas Day was brought back by 12 days.

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