Sunday, 8 January 2012

The Great Storm

Saturday wasn't too bad although it was cloudy for most of the day it remained dry. The wind picked up for a short while in the evening but nothing too bad and it was short lived.

I thought last week’s storm was bad but obviously Britain has suffered from far worse storms in the past. All too often we only seem to consider our weather over it’s modern well measured era rather than delving too deeply into the past. 

The Great Storm of 1703 lasted from 24th November to 2nd December with the worst of the storm hitting on the Friday night and Saturday morning of November 26/27. The winds struck at a reported 140mph in the English Channel and it’s thought winds speeds even higher than this would have been recorded further north.

Click here to read full story

There are parallels in the story of many windmills being destroyed in the storm some catching fire as their sails spun out of control in the wind.

The Eddystone lighthouse constructed 5 years earlier was totally destroyed killing its designer Henry Winstanley who visited the lighthouse to see how it would withstand the elements.

At sea the storm devastated the English Navy which lost lost 14 of its principal fighting ships and 1,500 crew. Around 40 merchant ships were reported lost.

The total loss of life was estimated at around 8,000.

Thought to be a 1 in 500 year storm it just goes to show you never can tell what the weather might throw at you.


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