EGU24-16596, updated on 11 Mar 2024
EGU General Assembly 2024
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Mapping a Decade of Seasonal Hydrological Forecasting: The UK Hydrological Outlook’s Journey 

Jamie Hannaford1, Katie Facer-Childs1, and the The Hydrological Outlooks Team*
Jamie Hannaford and Katie Facer-Childs and the The Hydrological Outlooks Team
  • 1Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, HSR, Wallingford, United Kingdom of Great Britain – England, Scotland, Wales (
  • *A full list of authors appears at the end of the abstract

The UK Hydrological Outlook provides an insight into future hydrological conditions across the UK, through sub-seasonal to seasonal forecasts of river flows and groundwater levels. The Outlook was initiated during the 2012 drought, which subsequently terminated with severe flooding. That remarkable year saw simultaneous drought restrictions and flood warnings, underlining the pressing need to go beyond situation monitoring (where are we now?) towards seasonal forecasts (what is likely to happen next?). Motivated by these events, the UK Hydrological Outlook was first implemented in 2013 and now celebrates a decade of operational service. This decade has seen notable flood (e.g., 2013 – 2014, 2015 – 2016, 2019 – 2020) and drought episodes (e.g., 2018, 2022), with the Outlook now standing as a valuable source of evidence for users ranging from the news media to government departments. Over these years, it has evolved into a dependable and widely used tool, delivering essential insights to regulators, the water industry, and other stakeholders to inform their water resources management decisions. This collaborative effort, led by UKCEH and involving the Met Office, the British Geological Survey, and the UK Measuring Authorities, has matured into a sophisticated operational system, which includes information on uncertainties and user-friendly interactive visualisation options. This presentation showcases its origins, development, and growth, bringing together multiple research strands converging towards the current operational product. In addition, we include an overview of current and future developments.

The Hydrological Outlooks Team:

Rachael Armitage, Vicky Bell, John Bloomfield, David Boorman, Wilson Chan, Helen Davies, Richard Davis, Katie Facer-Childs, Jamie Hannaford, Shaun Harrigan, Christopher Jackson, Alan Jenkins, Jeff Knight, Amit Kumar, Rosie Lane, Jonathan Mackay, Eugene Magee, Nikos Mastrantonas, Andrew McKenzie, Gemma Nash, Simon Parry, Christel Prudhomme, Mark Rhodes-Smith, Ali Rudd, Adam Scaife, Gayatri Suman, Cecilia Svensson, Nicky Stringer, Maliko Tanguy, Stephen Turner

How to cite: Hannaford, J. and Facer-Childs, K. and the The Hydrological Outlooks Team: Mapping a Decade of Seasonal Hydrological Forecasting: The UK Hydrological Outlook’s Journey , EGU General Assembly 2024, Vienna, Austria, 14–19 Apr 2024, EGU24-16596,, 2024.

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