Also known as the 'Long range shipping forecast' or the 'Offshore shipping forecast', it has been broadcast since 1922
. It divides the sea around the UK into chunks, the most amusingly-named of which are 'dogger
' and 'lundy'. Before 2001 the bit to the North-west of Spain was called 'Finisterre' ('End of the earth'); it is now called Fitzroy
, as the Spanish equivalent of the forcast called another area 'Finisterre'. This change was reported in the mainstream news and is the kind of thing that makes non-seagoing folk worry, as the shipping forcast is a national institution in the UK. It's nice to listen to weather reports of gales in the channel whilst tucked up in bed, and it makes perfect ambient
listening. Seamus Heaney
, the famous poet, wrote a poem about it:
Dogger. Rockall. Malin, Irish Sea:
Green swift upsurges, North Atlantic flux
Conjured by that strong gale-warning voice.
Collapse into a sibilant penumbra.
Midnight and closedown. Sirens of the tundra,
Off eel-road, seal road, keel road, whale road, raise
Their wind-compounded keen behind the baize
And drive the trawlers to the lee of Wicklow.
L'Etoile, Le Guiliemot, La Belle Helene
Nursed their bright names this morning in the bay
That toiled like mortar. It was marvellous
And actual, I said out loud, 'A haven,'
The word deepening, clearing, like the sky
Elsewhere on Minches, Cromarty, The Faroes.
You can read the current forecast here: