The Centre for Ecology & Hydrology - Gridded Estimates of Areal Rainfall (CEH-GEAR) data set was developed to provide reliable 1 km gridded estimates of daily and monthly rainfall for Great Britain (GB) and Northern Ireland (NI) (together with approximately 3500 km(2) of catchment in the Republic of Ireland) from 1890 onwards. The data set was primarily required to support hydrological modelling. The rainfall estimates are derived from the Met Office collated historical weather observations for the UK which include a national database of rain gauge observations. The natural neighbour interpolation methodology, including a normalisation step based on average annual rainfall (AAR), was used to generate the daily and monthly rainfall grids. To derive the monthly estimates, rainfall totals from monthly and daily (when complete month available) rain gauges were used in order to obtain maximum information from the rain gauge network. The daily grids were adjusted so that the monthly grids are fully consistent with the daily grids. The CEH-GEAR data set was developed according to the guidance provided by the British Standards Institution. The CEH-GEAR data set contains 1 km grids of daily and monthly rainfall estimates for GB and NI for the period 1890-2012. For each day and month, CEH-GEAR includes a secondary grid of distance to the nearest operational rain gauge. This may be used as an indicator of the quality of the estimates. When this distance is greater than 100 km, the estimates are not calculated due to high uncertainty. CEH-GEAR is available from doi:10.5285/5dc179dc-f692-49ba-9326-a6893a503f6e and is free of charge for commercial and non-commercial use subject to licensing terms and conditions.
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