Second wettest year ever – and it's getting wetter
Last year was the second wettest year across the UK in records dating back more than a century to 1910.
Total rainfall for 2012 was just a few millimetres shy of the record set in 2000, figures from the Met Office showed.
Persistent wet weather led to a total rainfall for the UK for the year of 1,330.7mm (52.4 inches), just 6.6mm (0.26 inches) short of the 2000 figure.
It was the wettest year on record for England and the third wettest for Wales, but Scotland experienced only its 17th wettest year and in Northern Ireland it was the 40th wettest.
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The Met Office also said there had been a high frequency of wet years since 2000, with four of the five wettest years on record since the beginning of this century.
They also disclosed preliminary evidence suggesting the UK could be getting more annual rainfall falling in more intense downpours.