The Met Office has announced that its storm names for 2020/21 will include ‘Heulwen’ – a Welsh name that translated as ‘sunshine’.
The Met Office work alongside their partners in the Met Éireann in Ireland and KNMI of the Netherlands to name the storms, and say they choose names that reflect the diversity of Britain, Ireland and the Netherlands.
The name Heulwen, however, caused considerable mirth on social media.
“I’m not sure if they got the memo that it translates from Welsh as sunshine,” Peter Gillibrand said.
“I hope H is named after my mother, she’s called Heulwen, always sunshine never a storm!” William Aled Jones.
“‘Heulwen’ means sunshine, so I’m looking forward to that one,” Bleddyn Bowen said. “And attempts by British newsreaders to say it.”
“Thanks for including a Welsh name,” Rhys Gerallt Owen. “Heulwen is probably one of the least appropriate names for a storm though.”
“Would be great to have more than one Welsh name next year,” Meinir Morris said. “The irony of the meaning of the name though…”
How are storms named?
Storms have been named since 2015 in order to aid communication of approaching severe weather through media partners and other government agencies, the Met office said.
A storm will be named when it has the potential to cause an amber or red warning.
Unfortunately for Heulwen, her name may end up unused as the storms are named alphabetically. The 2019/20 season only ever reached Francis.
To avoid any confusion over naming, if a storm is the remnants of a tropical storm or hurricane that has moved across the Atlantic, the Met office stick with its previous name.