Spring 2017 over much of Europe was warmer than the 1981-2010 average, thanks to ridges of high pressure forming regularly over western Europe, somewhat similar to the previous winter period. Seasonal anomalies of 1-2C above normal were widespread over Spain, France, the UK and Netherlands, as well as southern and western Germany, the Alps, northern Italy and the Balkans. Parts of Spain and France saw seasonal anomalies 2-3C above the normal. Nearer normal over southern Italy and south Balkans. Northern Scandinavia and north-western Russia had a cool spring.
Drier than normal in Italy, the Alps, Spain, France, Germany, Netherlands and UK, with only Nordic regions, Romania and other parts of Eastern Europe having wet anomalies. The dry weather over the Alps compounded the lack of winter rainfall, with many river levels and reservoirs running at near record low levels.
A monthly breakdown:
March 2017: Widespread and strong warm anomalies over all of Europe, especially from France eastwards to Eastern Europe, with temperatures 3-5C above normal. Widespread high pressure over western Europe, briefly punctuated by occasional strong westerly winds events over UK, Netherlands, Germany and Denmark, allowed Atlantic warmth and also strengthening spring sunshine to be the greatest influence, with a lack of frost and cold air from the north in many areas. Eastern Spain, UK and Nordic were rather wet, but Italy and Balkans were very dry.
April 2017: Northwards development of high pressure over western Europe, while low pressure deepened over Scandinavia. This pattern allowed cool air to periodically sink south over central and eastern Europe, with Germany averaging ~2C below normal for the month, while Spain averaged 3-4C above normal, as hot air moved north from Morocco. France, Italy and the UK saw a few cooler spells, but came out 1-2C above normal. Very dry over western Europe and the western Alps as Atlantic fronts were blocked to the west, with record low rainfall totals in places. Wet over Romania and parts of the Austrian Alps as rain and snow swept south from Scandinavia. A few days of excellent wind and solar power over NW and Central Europe, due to fresh north-westerly winds. It was a windy month on average in Scotland, Germany and Denmark, but not so in Italy.
May 2017: High latitude high pressure blocking patterns near Iceland and northern Scandinavia, produced an anomalous easterly wind flow over northern Europe. Western Europe averaged 2-3C above normal, mainly thanks to a unusual hot spell in the last 10 days here, but close to normal in eastern half of Europe and cool over north-east Scandinavia. Dry again over much of Europe, with no sustained strong winds, but good solar production in Italy and Germany