Observatories - hourly reporting stations

A small number (up to about 6) designated observatories in the UK have published frequent (up to hourly) weather observations over a long period The NMLA have these records for 1922-1967 as the Observatories Year Book as digital images, but the records go back at least to 1840 in some places e.g. Greenwich.

Sample page from the Observatories Year Book

Some of these observations have been digitised, as pressures from Aberdeen and Valencia, at least, are included in the International Surface Pressure Databank (ISPD), but those observations are only a subset of those available and their provenance and quality are both poor. This source is particularly desirable as it offers hourly data, though only from a small number of stations.

As a bulk source of printed observations in a common format, this is a tempting target for automated transcription tools. These are not yet available, but this is likely to change soon as this is an area of active research and development (see, for example https://aws.amazon.com/textract/). We should probably postpone any work on this source until such tools come into use.