The climate of the area is affected by altitude; there is a fall in temperature with increase in height above sea level of nearly 1°C for each 100 m. The frequency of snow is an obvious manifestation of the effect. In the southwest of England there are typically only 5 days of snow falling at sea level each year whereas there are 8 days at 300 m. At higher altitudes the effect is more dramatic; in Scotland there are nearer 35 days per year at sea level, 38 days at 300 m, but 60 days at 600 m.

The colder conditions at higher altitudes have a direct effect on the growing season. On the southwest coast of England there are nearly 365 growing days per year, but this decreases by 9 days for each 30 m above sea level. In northern England and Scotland there are only about 250 growing days which are reduced by 5 days per 30 m rise, i.e. to just 200 days at 300 m (1000 feet) above sea level in northern England.

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