Britain’s obsession with the weather: 60 per cent admit it’s a ‘social prop’



A study has found that for more than half of us, conversation turns to our climate at least once every six hours.
A quarter of us deem the topic of such interest that we use it as an icebreaker.

Our obsession with the weather runs so deep that almost 70 per cent of British people check the weather forecast at least once a day.
And the fascination appears to increase with age, as more than 80 per cent of over-55s seek out a daily forecast, compared to 42 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds.
Foreign observers are often quick to gloat that Britain’s unpredictable and often wet weather is the cause of our fixation, however, only 44 per cent of those polled agreed.
One in five claimed that weather-talk is an easy way of appearing friendly to strangers, while 12 per cent said it helps keep conversations safe and impersonal.
Despite our meteorological misfortune, a quarter of Britons admit to becoming defensive when our climate is ridiculed, the YouGov poll for Walkers Crisps found.
Social anthropologist Kate Fox, who is director of the Social Issues Research Centre think tank, said: “Britons need weather-talk to help us overcome our social inhibitions and handicaps.
“The variability of the British weather makes it an ideal medium for our social messages.
“We certainly talk about it a lot but this is not because it is an intrinsically interesting topic. Over half of the people we spoke to admitted that they used weather-talk to facilitate social interaction.”
The study also revealed that men are more optimistic about the weather than women, largely believing there are fewer rainy days each year than the Met Office’s figure of 154 on average.
Unsurprisingly, 79 per cent of those polled said they favoured warm and sunny weather, while 32 per cent admitted enjoying the cosy feeling of being indoors when the weather turns bad.
A further 38 per cent said they welcomed rain because it is good for their gardens.
The study of more than 2,000 people was commissioned in conjunction with a Walkers competition offering cash prizes to customers who accurately predict rain.

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2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Ammara said,

    WHY DO PEOPLE CARRY OUT THIS RESEARCH?!
    i mean really cmon theyre better things to do with life 😛


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