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How did the newsgroup come to be & when?

On the 1st March, 1996, Philip Eden, a highly respected meteorologist based in the UK, proposed that a new newsgroup be formed, with the title: "". A 'request-for-discussion' (RFD) was called for, and after overwhelming agreement, and a suggestion that it might more appropriately be part of the "uk.sci.-" hierarchy, on the 4th April, 1996 a 'fast-track' procedure was invoked to enable the group we now know as "" (usw for short) to be enabled 7 days later.

On the 20th April, 1996, the charter for the newsgroup (also proposed by Philip) was formally published, and this was probably the first post into the newsgroup (an extract from this is contained in this section of the FAQ). The newsgroup was the 131st ng created in the "uk" hierarchy. Newsgroup traffic has grown dramatically since about 1999, and the group is particularly busy when major snow events are expected (real or otherwise) or when significant outbreaks of severe thunderstorms are possible. The group is populated by a wide variety of people from many countries (NOT just the UK) with all sorts of backgrounds - as long as you are 'weather-aware', you are very welcome!