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Author Topic: The 1987 'Hurricane'  (Read 33732 times)

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Offline conan

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #53 on: October 16, 2017, 18:39:17 »
My main memory of the 1987 storm was working 4 lifts up a scaffold in Chipping Sodbury (Gloucestershire) with a lot of very noisy power machinery and not realizing how dangerous it had become until the scaffold started violently shaking.The 30 mile journey home was a nightmare with trees down and lorries blown over. I reckon the route we finally forced was nearer 60 miles and at one point involved driving under a pine tree that had blown over and become lodged against another tree on the opposite side of the lane.We didn't lose power thankfully and managed to force our way to the local in the evening. Didn't get back to work for 2 days  :)
To remain ignorant of what happened before you were born is to remain a child......Cicero

Online filmer01

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #52 on: October 16, 2017, 17:22:36 »
I had come home from work with a stinking cold, and retired at an early hour, self medicating with a LemSip generously laced with Scotch.

I woke up thinking that I must have the flu, as the room was moving. No, the house was moving! Our 170+ year old cottage had an upper floor best described as flexible and it felt like we were at sea.

Our young boys were now in bed with us, the roof was creaking, the LPG bottles (the big 47kg ones) were banging together trying to escape from their hoses, the Crittal windows in the Kitchen were flexing and letting in howling wind and our oversize (8x4) back door was twisting and adding to the whistles as the wind just kept gusting. Near dawn a truck stopped almost outside and sat there with its engine running. With daylight we could see that the road was blocked by our newly constructed barn roof.

Once outside it became clear that the roof, which had been constructed of a timber frame clad with corrugated green plastic, had been lifted bodily off the brickwork below, spun around the telegraph pole between it and the road, and ended in a shattered heap across the road. The construction had initially held together, it had taken the original 7 inch square oak wall plates with it. One end was used as a tack and feed room, and there was horse tack spread all around. The back of our roof had been almost stripped of its Kent PegTiles and numerous things were either missing completely or just somewhere else.

Next door had a chimney on the gable end, that had come down, luckily straight through the 1950s asbestos panel garage, so that was one disposal problem sorted.

Further along the road another chimney came down, but this time through the roof, narrowly missing the elderly occupants in bed below. However one neighbour slept right through the whole thing. He was woken by the chorus of chain saws as we all tried to clear the roads.

When we eventually got power restored after over a week, they couldn't do our neighbour opposite for another few days because our barn roof had got tangled with the power line to their house and pulled the meter straight out through the larder window.

Thankfully, both buildings and contents insurances were agreed and paid promptly and sensibly.
Illegitimus nil carborundum

Offline smiler

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #51 on: October 16, 2017, 13:55:33 »
Thinking back on it 80sChild that 30 years has gone so quick that mile stone seems a pebble  :) :)

Offline 80sChild

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #50 on: October 16, 2017, 13:18:07 »
Has you've all probably gathered by now TODAY is the 30th Anniversary of the great storm of 1987.

Needless to say south eastern news has been quite keen on this story and there's been some quite interesting features on both TV and radio, and some viewers/ listeners have been telling their stories of the night.
I can still vaguely remember that night myself. Since I've already posted my story of the night earlier on this thread I'll forgo repeating it again (although you can scroll down and read it again if you like).

30 years is quite a mile-stone isn't it?  :)

Offline Jean

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #49 on: December 04, 2015, 11:46:22 »
I do hope the stag beetles really are living in the decaying monk. Stag beetles are endangered which is hardly surprising as the larvae take around six years to pupate. This is a beetle that seriously needs permanence.

Offline Lyn L

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #48 on: November 05, 2015, 21:13:09 »
Sadly there isn't a lot left of the monk now, the beetles must have been having a real feast.
Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life tryi

Offline HERB COLLECTOR

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #47 on: November 05, 2015, 21:05:37 »
  The monk was not to be seen when we visited. Does any one have any idea where he has gone, or if he will be returning?

It was relocated and dedicated as a stag beetle habitat :)

See http://www.friendsofthevines.co.uk/gallery/the-monk/
Don't Let the Devil Ride Chris and Abby

Offline Jean

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #46 on: November 05, 2015, 20:53:51 »
Although we had made our home in Essex at the time of the 1987 storm. We followed all that was happening in Kent, we had and still do, have a lot of family there. We thought at the time that Essex had been badly hit but the havoc in Kent was devastating. We visited Rochester around the beginning of September this year and walked through the Vines where many trees were lost in '87. Just after the storm, a monk was carved from the trunk of one of the fallen trees. It stood in pride of place in the centre of the Vines.The monk was not to be seen when we visited. Does any one have any idea where he has gone, or if he will be returning?

Offline 80sChild

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #45 on: October 16, 2015, 14:04:39 »
According to today's local news, apparently TODAY is the 28th anniversary of the Great Storm of 1987.

I must say, that kind of really sprang up on me, and I didn't actually realize until they said it.

Mind you, 28 years is practically a LIFETIME ago now.

Offline skipraider

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #44 on: October 11, 2015, 14:33:26 »
I was living in Leytonstone, East London at the time, but working in Sevenoaks. That part of London largely escaped the worst of the storm, but it was still quite bad by all accounts - I slept through the entire thing though so I wouldn't know.

I got up in the morning to the unusual sight of all my house-mates sitting around watching the news on TV. They told me there had been "a bit of a storm last night" and I might want to think twice about driving down to Sevenoaks, which had apparently been hit quite hard. "Nonsense," I thought, so set off on my usual daily commute.

The traffic coming out of London was, well, virtually non-existent. I've never seen the roads so empty and I made very good time until I got to the St. Mary Cray area, when suddenly I and the few other foolhardy souls who'd ventured out started to become hampered in our journey by things like large fallen trees and upturned cars blocking the road. In true British spirit we all mucked in and managed to clear a path to get vehicles through, and I eventually made it in to the office some three or four hours after setting off.

Once at the office it became clear that the whole exercise had been pointless as the power was cut and no work could be done. I tidied my desk (a rare occurrence) and headed home again. The journey back took longer because there was now more traffic about but I got there eventually. I think my employers gave those of us who'd actually turned up that day a £10 bonus for our troubles!

Up until a month before this I'd been staying in a caravan at my parents' home near Lenham. That caravan had been blown approximately 1/4 mile across a couple of fields and ended up impaled on some fence posts, a mangled mess. So I guess I was quite lucky!

Offline Mickleburgh

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #43 on: October 05, 2015, 15:27:32 »
At the time of the `87 hurricane my mother was living alone in a house that was just over fifty years old, all original wooden window frames and roof, etc. Despite the severe buffeting that kept her awake all night she took some fiendish delight in coming through totally unscathed whereas neighbours in `modernised` ones had lost tiles, a chimney in one case, etc. Someone (unwisely) had opened their front door in the midst of it and blew their new rear PVC patio doors ten yards down the garden!

Offline conan

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #42 on: October 04, 2015, 20:29:07 »
After the storm my dad got hold of a branch from the Holm oak from Minster Abbey churchyard that had been destroyed in the storm.After he retired he took up woodturning and with a lump of well seasoned oak he started producing bowls and other objects including this thimble,thus although the tree was felled by the storm it still lives on.

To remain ignorant of what happened before you were born is to remain a child......Cicero

Offline 80sChild

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #41 on: October 04, 2015, 15:42:02 »
I also somewhat remember the great storm of 87. I think I  was about 7 years old at the time, and my family had only recently moved into the house itself.

I don't remember too much about the night itself, but I can remember hearing the weather on the news that evening and the wind outside slowly getting stronger throughout the evening towards bedtime.

At some point in the night I must have woken up in the dark because of a powercut, and my parents came into my bedroom because they were concerned that I might be frightened at how bad the storm was, so they let me stay with them in their room.
I can (vaguely)  remember hearing the wind literally HOWLING outside, and it felt has if the walls  were actually shuddering.

With the power out and my family huddled in my parents bedroom thought that it would be safer downstairs, so in the pitch darkness with nothing but a touch we krept downstairs and stayed in the living room the whole night, and despite the storm raging outside I became too tired and eventually fell asleep on the sofa in my pyjamas.

When I awoke on the sofa the next morning it was already day, and our next door neighbour (who was a very old but kind lady) and come round to see if we were alright.

My father (who was working for an engineering company at the time) had to leave in the morning and try and get to work, but I stayed home from school that day.

BONZO

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #40 on: October 12, 2012, 11:03:03 »
Oh yes I remember it well!

We’d only been married for about a month (just celebrated 25 years!), and had a flat in Upper Belvedere. My wife woke up during the night and said “look, the lamp posts are moving!” I took a look out of the window and it was certainly very windy but I just went back to bed.
The next morning I got up as usual and made my way to the train station to pick up the 06:46 to get to work in London but no trains were running. I arrived back at the flat and told my wife who said she really had to get to work for some important work at the bank (Coutts).
I got the car out of the garage and started to drive to London when we first noticed the full extent of the damage by having to pick our way down roads past fallen trees. I think I got as far as Blackheath but was running low on petrol so I had to drop her off en route and turn back as no petrol stations were open.

I phoned into my control and was told to report to my local Telephone Exchange. On the door was a big sign that said “BT Central London refugees this way”. I asked someone what they wanted me to do (I was a Telex jumper runner in Fleet Street exchange) and they just said “nothing for you here, sign that form and go home”.

Michael Fish’s apparent “Blooper” - entry from Wiki

BBC meteorologist Michael Fish drew particular criticism for reporting several hours before the storm hit, seemingly flippantly:
Earlier on today, apparently, a woman rang the BBC and said she heard there was a hurricane on the way; well, if you're watching, don't worry, there isn't, but having said that, actually, the weather will become very windy, but most of the strong winds, incidentally, will be down over Spain and across into France.

Fish has subsequently claimed that his comments about a hurricane had nothing to do with the UK; they referred to Florida, USA, and were linked to a news story immediately preceding the weather bulletin, but had been so widely repeated out of context that the British public remains convinced that he was referring to the approaching storm. According to Michael Fish, the woman in question was actually a colleague's mother who was about to go on holiday in the Caribbean, and had called regarding (the already long-dissipated) Hurricane Floyd to see if it would be safe to travel. Fish has also claimed that "nobody phoned up" and that she was a "non-existing woman", apparently contradicting the previous declaration, when interviewed about Anita Hart's claims of being the woman that made the call.

Fish went on to warn viewers in the UK to "batten down the hatches", saying it would be "very windy" across the south of England, but predicted that the storm would move further south along the English Channel and the British mainland would escape the worst effects. The remainder of his warning is frequently left out of re-runs, which only adds to the public's misconception of that day's forecasting. His analysis has been defended by weather experts. In particular, the lack of a weather ship in the Southwest Approaches, due to Met Office cutbacks, meant the only manner of tracking the storm was by using satellite data, as automatic buoys had not been deployed at the time.

Ironically, earlier forecasts as far back as the preceding weekend had correctly identified that gale force winds would affect Southern England. However, later runs of the model had indicated a more southerly track for the low pressure system, incorrectly indicating that the strongest winds would be confined to Northern and Central France. The French meteorological office used a different computer weather model to the British, and the French model proved more accurate in predicting the severity of the storm in the Channel.

Offline cliveh

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #39 on: October 12, 2012, 09:26:11 »
25th Anniversary of this on Monday! Lots about it in today's KM.


cliveh

 

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