View Full Version : The new look BBC weather....what d'ya think?

16th May 2005, 12:04
Anybody seen the revamped weather?

Just watched the 'new look' BBC weather forecast, and I'm not sure what I think of it

In some ways it certainly gives you a better idea of the spread of weather, but for us people up in Scotland, they seem to have shrunk the size of the top half of the country which makes it quite hard to see just what is happening as clearly as before.

How about them getting rid of the top half of France and the English Channel and moving everything down a bit, after all it is supposed to be the British weather.

Anyway, if it manages to improve the weather for flying then it will get my vote?;)

16th May 2005, 12:22
It cannot be just me who watches BBC weather, reads it on the Internet & Ceefax & gets three different forecasts for the same day!

I know they have to paint broad strokes to appeal to the lowest common denominator, but for gliding purposes where I need a specific wind direction & strength, it is very frustrating. Come on chaps, get on the same page!;)

16th May 2005, 13:00
Those shifting colours representing sun and cloud move a bit too quickly for me. Quite like the GMTV graphics actually.

16th May 2005, 13:05
I'm the same, but it's three different forecasts for the same day on the net!

Jordan D
16th May 2005, 13:25
You'd think the UK was mostly desert if you only watched those new forecasts!


16th May 2005, 13:30
I am with parap on this one - I sometimes check the wx on digital TV and it is totally different to all the others. Try comparing the BBC forecast to that of the metoffice - again, quite different, even though the BBC get their data from the metoffice :=

16th May 2005, 14:45
Every time they "update" the graphics they seem to dumbdown the forecast - how long before we have little smiling faces on the sun??!!

Give me pressure maps and the atlantic chart any day - come to think of it a few of those magnetic symbols that used to fall down the chart wouldn't go amiss either!

Obviously getting too old.....

16th May 2005, 16:03
Cīmon, itīs a real improvement on the last effort.
Agreed about the wind direction.
Perhaps an overlay of isobars and fronts such as is normal on some foreign forecasts, (German, I think), would improve the presentation.

Irish Steve
16th May 2005, 16:08
Every time they "update" the graphics they seem to dumbdown the forecast

Are you surprised? In time, all you will get will be graphics, a bit like the "forecast" on Euronews, that way, if they say nothing, and only show graphics, as long as the graphics are general enough, they then can't be blamed if they get it wrong.

It's been very noticable that since the famous hurricanr that wasn't, the forecasts are much more general, with a bit of sun, cloud and maybe the odd shower, or in other words, take your pick. If there's going to be some specific nasty, they'll mention it, but otherwise, generalise is the safest way out.

16th May 2005, 16:55
I used to like the old old Beeb displays, where a dour forecaster would deliver the report in a monotone voice, and the board was full of the traditional weather symbols( in felt), and all the lines of pressure were shown in millibars, made no sense to me as a sprog , but I generally surmised....whatever the weather...it's got to be good drinking weather...

16th May 2005, 17:22
this is a great weather tool

great weather tool (http://www.majorgeeks.com/download4190.html)

use the options tab to customise knots/mph etc............Degrees C or F etc..............

have fun................

16th May 2005, 17:27
On BBC breakfast this morning somebody emailed in regarding the lack of wind data in the new style forecast.

Apparently that will come later, the new system is being rolled out step-by-step.

I'm not too keen on the new graphics though, I couldn't keep up with it. It seems harder to see what the whole UK is doing in one go, instead you have to focus on just one area.

Someboady also commented this morning on the Breakfast show how useless the new forecast is on a black and white TV!


16th May 2005, 17:29
It doesn't matter what the grafics look like, the weather won't be any better or worse, even in Scotland.

16th May 2005, 17:31
The new display this morning showed extensive cloud (dark brown) over the south coast. The reality was a blue sky and bright sunshine. The EGHH Metar was giving SCT120.

I thought that the new technology was supposed to show you what was happening where you lived, instead of the global picture given by the old system.

16th May 2005, 18:13
Not overly impressed with new graphics. Whilst I appreciate it will take a while to get used to the new look, I did find it harder to actually work out what the weather is like in my area :confused: and i wish the camera view wouldn't swing round the country so much!!

Richard Taylor
16th May 2005, 18:33
All that moving about the country made me airsick...:yuk:

16th May 2005, 18:50
I'm with ATNotts, give us back the station circles and isobars and all the other goodies, b*****r the illeducated masses.:E

None of the above
16th May 2005, 18:57
Always prefer a chart that shows fronts, isobars etc and I suppose it would be expecting too much for them to be overlaid on the graphics. One thing that does drive me potty is Helen Young's pronunciation ie:
'temchers' and 'partikly'. Grrrrrrr.

Richard Taylor
16th May 2005, 19:12
Nothing wrong with Helen Young's warm fronts...:E

16th May 2005, 20:14
I seem to remember La Young appearing in a flying show on the Beeb. She ended up in a Vampire/Venom out of Hurn, all togged up in grow-bag and LSJ. Very fetching

:E :E

16th May 2005, 20:48
Be more impressed if they actually got it (nearly) right...


None of the above
16th May 2005, 21:01
Further to my last..............
I believe Ms. Young is a PPL holder and that her husband is a professional pilot.
PPRuNers, perhaps?

16th May 2005, 21:21
Since the Beeb knows where I live - because it manages to send my TV licence bill to my front door - why can't my TV just show the weather over my house and garden?

17th May 2005, 08:20
I think the new format is very poor. No fronts, low or high pressures, wind directions and speeds.
I particulary miss the high and low pressures not being shown as one can work out the weather oneself from them.

It is, I feel, very patronising, the BBC are assuming that we are all idiots and incapable of understanding a more scientific forecast.

This type of foreacst should be confined to children's hour.

henry crun
17th May 2005, 08:22
The BBC purchased this system from New Zealand, but they have changed the shading and some aspects of the presentation from the one I watch every evening on TVNZ.

Our presentation shows the snow capped mountains in white, there is some contour shading to indicate high ground, and the majority of the land mass is green.

On TVNZ cloud is indicated as fluffy white type cumulo form or a dirty sort of grey if rain bearing, with rain falling from it.
The clouds and fronts move in the way one would expect them to.

Having seen both presentations I prefer ours. It might be because I am used to it but I think it has a more natural appearance.

17th May 2005, 08:40
It's just more dumbing down. Bring back Greg Dyke!

17th May 2005, 08:40
It's fine to me, as long as Jo Farrow is in it. Such a lovely smile....

17th May 2005, 08:42
I watched it a few more times, and I'm afraid that in my opinion, it compares unfavourably even with the second rate presentation on "Morgenmagazin" on ARD/ZDF in Germany! You at least get overlays of fronts, and isobars from time to time with their attempt.

Another thing I've noticed, you now see hardly anything of the near continent. You used to see, and often have forecast temps for the Benelux, Northwestern France, and Western Norway - no all you see is a bit or Norway!

Obviously most viewers couldn't care less what's happening in Lille (or probably even locate the city!) but if you are heading over there then it was useful to get an idea of what weather you could expect.

Another thought - why do the beeb almost totally ignore the Irish Republic in the forecast - doesn't weather happen south of Newry?

17th May 2005, 10:22
Dunno why they bother to show it this way. From where I am sitting (12000 miles away) the UK weather still looks like shite.

H :ugh: :ugh: :ugh:

17th May 2005, 10:41
Helen Young started her PPL but never actually completed it. Kids & promotion got in the way apparently.

got caught
17th May 2005, 10:53
Before Monday we used to get the facts and the interpretation.

Now only the interpretation

17th May 2005, 14:44
I can't believe this has been 2 years in the making!

What a waste of license payers' money, I prefer the old version where I got an overall view of the country....isobars to



17th May 2005, 15:07
Isobars are back!

The new style weather on my local lunchtime new programme (Points West) showed isobars and high and low pressures coming in from the Atlantic. Also the 5 day summary had some of the black wind circles with arrows.

Hope this cheers some of you up a bit! :)


Richard Taylor
17th May 2005, 15:15
Given that Aberdeen has just had a hail shower & it's b****y freezing,I don't neeed isobars to know where the wind's coming from :rolleyes:

Thought it was B S T :confused:

17th May 2005, 15:19
What a waste of money..bloody confusing and your home town is only on display for a fraction of the time it used to be on.

Still, looks nice!

Maude Charlee
17th May 2005, 17:39
Well it drags the previously high (relatively speaking) standard of BBC weather down to the level of [email protected] on the other channels. Too much going on too quickly for your average bod to follow, and nothing is immediately obvious in the way the old weather symbols were.

Looks like another case of 'we have some money to spend on CGI graphics so we're going to spend it regardless of whether it adds anything to the viewers' experience/understanding or not'. Silly barstewards. :*

Still, on the bright side, they did at least get today's forecast correct for the North, and surprisingly accurate with the cloud/rain.

17th May 2005, 18:56
Dreadful, dreadful, dreadful. I hope it may improve after the BBC listen to feedback on the changes (hope springs eternal). In the meantime I'll fall back on my old favourite at Euro WX (http://euro.wx.propilots.net/)


17th May 2005, 19:33
I can't believe this has been 2 years in the making!
As crun said, it hasn't been. It works well in NZ (the same size as the UK), without overly distorting things. It would appear the BBc have taken the original concept and spent two years bastardising it to look crap.....

Jordan D
18th May 2005, 00:56
Not the biggest fan of Helen Young .... Helen Willetts however, :)


18th May 2005, 14:10
Wel, its forced me to admit that CNN is finally doing something better than the Beeb, at least when Jenny is doing the WX.

19th May 2005, 15:43
Can I ask people who don't like the new weather format to complain otherwise nothing will get done.

You can complain at :-


Has anyone else got any other ideas how we can try to get the BBC to ditch or at least modify the new format so it gives more information ?

Solid Rust Twotter
19th May 2005, 15:54
Tell them there's a penguin on the TV?

Jordan D
19th May 2005, 16:31
Who? Andrew Marr?


Krystal n chips
19th May 2005, 16:56
A certain irony to the Lunch time news---an article on windfarms in the UK----followed a short time later by the "new look" :mad: forecast and chart---devoid of isobars and wind speeds etc--let alone fronts ---minor details in weather forecasting I know--but they do have the odd impact on our weather now and again-- a detail which seems to have escaped whoever decided on the "make it simple with lots of graphics cos that's cool" approach:mad:

henry crun
19th May 2005, 21:27
Forgot to mention in my earlier post that in NZ we get firstly the current days national temperatures, then the synoptic chart for the next 24 hours, then the graphic presentation with more natural shading, followed by a brief forecast for each significant town/city.

You have been short changed by just having the graphics, which, in isolation do not give enough information.

Krystal n chips
20th May 2005, 16:28
Followed Argonautical's advice / link and complained to the Beeb--and got a reply back today--the gist of which is "Blah, blah, thank you etc"---but included the snippets such as "will be keen to monitor public reaction to the new format"--and--"your opinion will play a key role in the decisions"---so,if my opinion plays such a key role----how about getting the isobars etc. on the screen for Monday then?:ooh:

Anybody else complained and got a similar reply at all ?

24th May 2005, 21:25
I have complained to the BBC about the new weather forecasts and no doubt got the same standard reply as yourself. I then complained about the standard reply and got a proper response, though still peddling the arrogant condecending line.

Dear 10002level

Thank you for your further e-mail regarding BBC Weather.

I was sorry to read that you were dissatisfied with the response you received.

Our research also showed that viewers were often confused by the amount of information presented to them. For example many people do not understand wind speed and direction or pressure charts and so feel disenfranchised when they are shown. However, we will continue to use them when they help to tell the weather story.

Nevertheless, I do realise that you hold a different view on this matter, therefore please be assured that I have registered your comments on our audience log. This is an internal document which will then be made available to programme makers, editors and members of senior news management.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to contact us with the strength of your concerns.


Paul Kettle
BBC Information"

Anyone reading this, please complain using the following link if you too think that the BBC have gone too far in their dumbing down of the weather. Then. if you don't like the reply, complain again and you will no doubt receive the above reply.


Krystal n chips
25th May 2005, 16:46
Seems aviation is now a "minority interest" group---along with a few hundred thousand others who don't conform to the BBC's concepts of society:mad:

Lots of condescending excuses here--nothing to do with the fact they have just spent around Ģ1m---( yesterdays Guardian leader) and have made a monumental cock up in the process by any chance ?-----No, thought not !.


25th May 2005, 23:26
I have registered my complaint and will get back to you all with the reply.

26th May 2005, 00:02
ditto on lexxity :ok:

I want more wind information on weather charts - especially on interacive.


26th May 2005, 12:44
I think it's brilliant. I particularly like the way they have dumbed down the wind with those delightful little arrows.

All together now!

Who do you think you are kidding Mr Hitler, If you think your... (http://www.mgnet.karoo.net/dads%20army.htm)

Krystal n chips
27th May 2005, 17:50
Tonights forecaster took a good few mins after the forecast to tell us that "they have listened" etc.--and to watch tomorrow for some changes to the graphics etc. How much, of course, remains to be seen.

None of the above
28th May 2005, 06:48
Have a look at the 'Forecast Cafe' messageboard on the BBC Weather Centre website for trenchant comment:

Jordan D
28th May 2005, 09:20
I await to see what the tilt change does - I am bloody sick and tired of the bloody SNP lot thinking they have won .... it was .... oh never mind.


Gingerbread Man
28th May 2005, 11:27
Someone's probably said this already, but in my eagerness to vent bile, I didn't read all the posts.
Why do we have to have this, ultra-quick, super-easy, laminated-in-case-of-spillage, weather summary for retards? The mega streamlined weather the other day said "Cooler Showers" with no punctuation, not even an 'n' to indicate that it wasn't a single phrase. What happens when it's hot and showery? Does it say 'Hot showers'? It really doesn't need to be that lazy.
Secondly, since when has weather been classified into two types: 'rain', and 'not rain'? That's all the information they give you. What happened to fronts, isobars, proper wind arrows, and those precious notifications that it is 'windy' in the sea. If some people don't understand the whole forecast, who cares?! By all means change how it looks if you really want to, but don't remove most of the information. I also like to know what kind of cloud is overhead; is it black fluffly cloud or grey fluffy cloud tomorrow? Instead you get this patchy thing that looks like the UK has rejoiced in incontinence and been covered in damp patches.

Keep the new look, but give me the whole weather.

Rant over :mad:

Kind regards

Ginge ;)

28th May 2005, 18:20
Watched the new "revised" weather today and it is still useless. :yuk: All they have done is alter the tilt very slightly, still no sign of wind speed and direction.

I have complained by e-mail and 'phone and been fobbed off with bland " we are listening" replies. I am an aviator and sailor and want to know what is coming not watch a computer game show which only shows a very general idea of where the rain will be.

The "pressure" must be kept on the BBC until they change. This will probably only happen when the present project manager resigns or gets moved sideways. He has spent Ģ1,000,000 and will not accept his mistake. Every complaint will be a small lever to move or remove him so keep sending them.

Bring back isobars, fronts and wind arrows.


Krystal n chips
28th May 2005, 18:45
I watched the "revised" version with interest as well---just in case the BBC had actually implemented any changes that may have a relevance to a synoptic chart and that quite a few of us may actually wish to be aware of---hope springs eternal here of course:mad:

If said project manager is wholly responsible for this debacle, then it doesn't say much for the overall standard of management at the BBC given they have clearly given him / her a free remit without bothering to even monitor the proposed changes.

Be nice to take him / her for a walk in the hills, some off-shore sailing, a ride in an HGV or an airborne trip in some "inclement conditions"-----just a nasty little thought :E

28th May 2005, 20:03
I'll be honest folks, when I'm sailing the last thing I take any notice of is the weather forecast after the news, it's for people who want to know when to take the dog for a walk. Proper forecast on Radio 4 and weather faxes that show the fronts and isobars that sort of stuff.

Funny comment the other night on telly was concern for fishermen. I would hope as a professional person at sea they would check the weather with more than one source.

28th May 2005, 20:55
How do we change the BBC's opinion of the weather forcast?

Well, here's an idea.

If anyone wants to petition the BBC about the lack of isobar charts (including weather fronts and pressure readings) and numerical wind speeds and directions on its new forecasts, you can go to the online petition which, due to server problems has been extended to close at midnight on 30/05/2005 (Monday).


P.s. The text of the petition is as follows:

On Monday May the 16th 2005 the BBC changed the format of their TV and web weather forecasts.

As part of this change the BBC no longer considered synoptics charts, wind velocities and weather front information a normal part of its TV forecasts. What information they did provide was presented hastily as a confusing mix of animated graphics on a muddy coloured, distorted map, that gave little space to show weather information for anywhere north of the midlands.

The aim of this petition is to show the BBC that they grossly
misunderstood the requirements of their viewers.

The new forecasts disenfranchise those viewers who rely on accurate weather information for their businesses, sports and hobbies. They have also made some Scottish viewers think they are no longer important enough to be given equal billing with the Home Counties.

This petition will be sent to the BBC and also to members of
parliament so that they can bring pressure to bear on the BBC.

Those who sign this petition agree that:

We the undersigned require that the BBC return to providing clear detailed information in their weather forecasts, namely.

1. Show isobar charts including weather fronts and pressure readings.

2. Show numerical wind speeds and directions, even for winds less than 5mph.

3. Use a map where equal emphasis is given to the view of the whole of the UK.

4. Pace any animated forecasts slow enough so that the viewer can easily follow the moving images and changing time information.

Due to server problems yesterday this petition has been extended to close at midnight on 30/05/2005.

I'm afraid you will need to provide name and address details as the idea is also to send the petition to parliament who require this information if a petition is to be considered valid. This may seem a bit over the top but there are two good reasons to do this:

1. If we get more than 300 signatures dotgovuk have to formulate a response, whilst the BBC can just bin it.

2. It is likely that the MP will have some influence over the beeb,
at least more than just a bunch or normal viewers. Scottish MPs are already up in arms as the new BBC maps reduce Scotland to tiny proportions compared with the home counties.

12th Jun 2005, 11:29
Was the petition mentioned delivered to the BBC, and with what result? Weather forecasts still poorly presented and dumbed-down.

15th Jun 2005, 09:10
For those of us who want to see a synoptic chart, a good one is just a click away at :-

You can view the forecast charts singly or as an animation.

The Right Stuff
26th Jul 2005, 14:14
Well, it's been going some months now, and it's still utterly useless.

Without wishing to repeat what others have said, I agree totally; apparently weather is now just sunny or not, rain or not.


I've complained twice, but forget it, it's a write-off.


Krystal n chips
26th Jul 2005, 16:36
True--all the complaints in the world will not shake the arrogance out of the Beeb----who never make mistakes which is more to the point, at least they never admit to doing so despite clear evidence to the contrary :mad: ---however--there may be a glimmer of hope---on a couple of broadcasts they have actually shown---wait for it ---dah !dah ! ---fronts and those funny squiggly lines--so if they can do it once or twice--why not all the time ??. Simple question methinks.

None of the above
26th Jul 2005, 19:33
Yes, Krystal, I've noticed something with an uncanny resemblance to a synoptic chart once or twice. On the other hand, the offending forecaster has not been seen lately. I believe he is being "rehabilitated",

Jordan D
26th Jul 2005, 20:14
Yes there were isobars yesterday when the gorgeous Helen Willetts was presenting .... didn't see what the isobars were looking like, as I was concentrating on other visual things.


None of the above
14th Nov 2005, 18:17
Helen Young presented the forecast for the final time a couple of evenings ago as she is relinquishing the post of o i/c BBC Weather.

Last night Peter Gibbs committed the ultimate heresy of showing a synoptic chart - I gather HY had been instrumental in its demise. I form the distinct impression that Mr Gibbs is a pretender to the throne and the best of luck to him.

Jordan D
14th Nov 2005, 21:37
Firstly - this is serious thread resurrection.

Secondly - I didn't realise HY was gone. Oh well ...


14th Nov 2005, 21:48
Where have the sunrise and susnet times gone from BBC Weather online? :(