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Author Topic: The 1987 'Hurricane'  (Read 39446 times)

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Offline Sentinel S4

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #38 on: June 20, 2011, 09:39:25 »
I was living on the Isle of Man at the time of this event. We had all of the aircraft tied to the apron and all of the ferries were sent out to stand at sea. We had nothing. My girlfriend, now wife, was in Folkestone that night with some of her friends. She said that driving home, in a proper Mini, was like driving through a waterfall. She got blown about on the A2 but got home safe. I went nuts trying to contact her over the next three days. That November I made sure we would never be apart like that again and put a wedding ring on her finger, still married. We moved back to Kent about 18 months later and I could not believe the damage even then. A friend of mine told me that some very enterprising person had got a Traction Engine and saw bench out and was earning money ripping logs into planks for a tree surgeon. I love that shot of the Hengist on the beach, one of her sisters was the 'Antrim Princess' renamed as the 'Tynwald' and owned by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Co at the time. The landscape changed so much I think it shocked anyone who knew the county, but have you noticed that 24 years later we have got most of the skyline back? Larkey Woods have regenerated as have Pennypot and all of the others. Where is the long term damage that discussed? Apart from all of the new housing estates that blight the area it looks as good as ever. Regards to all you Survivors, Sentinel S4.
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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #37 on: June 19, 2011, 23:44:01 »
Can remember it well!! Was living on the White Road Estate. That night it was at first really windy then really blowing a gale because i was taking my dog for a walk, just got in and then there was quite a lot of noise everywhere. As it went on things were flying everywhere, I even had some of my 6ft fence uprooted!! Was meant to go to work next day, me and my brother were working at the time in Seal, just outside of Sevenoaks. Got so far down Seven Mile Lane and had to turn back.

Fred the Needle

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #36 on: June 13, 2011, 16:53:08 »
I lived in Walderslade a the time, Ramilles Close and our garden backed on to the woods that were part of the school grounds (can't remember the name of the school).

I'd been out playing badminton the evening before with my (ex) wife at the church just where St Williams Way joins City way in Rochester.  I remember that as we came out, my ex remarked on how still and warm it was.

Don't know what time we woke up, but the wind was howling round the house.  We got the kids downstairs into the front room which was the safest one we could think of (and let a "stray" cat in through the patio door - it insisted on being let out again about an hour later).

We could hear a lot of crashing and hoped that a tree from the wood would not fall on the house.  Luckily the wind was blowing at right angles to our house so all the trees blew sideways to us.  I remember hearing the garage door blow open and my ex insisted that I went out to shut it.  I got to the front porch but could hear the "thud" of tiles being blown off of the roof into the lawn at the front.  So I came back in on the basis that if anyone was out trying to steal stuff from the garage, they were welcome to it  :)

Couldn't believe the devastation the next morning.  Tiles missing from all the houses (it was a new build at the time) and various "things" in the street.  "Funniest" bit was an angry guy from another street on the estate looking for the owner of a shed roof that had blown onto his car.  Did he think the shed owner had done it on purpose?

Our next door neighbour slep through the lot and as his wife was away, he got up (late coz his alarm didn't go off) and set off for work.  He was only stopped by a tree across the road some distance away.

I remember we managed, thanks to Invicta Radio, to find a roofer who charged a very reasonable price to repair the roof (he did quite a lot in the street after they saw him doing ours and heard the price - a lot of sharks made a killing at that time).

One family on the street had moved to Kent from Lancashire.  They endured the hurricane and the snow before moving back oop north saying they couldn't stand our weather  :)

Offline Bilgerat

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #35 on: June 11, 2011, 10:59:04 »
I was flat-sharing in Sandgate at the time. The flat was in a building across the road from the beach. I remember that the wind was so strong the whole building was shaking and the rain was coming around the window frames. The waves were thundering over the sea wall, over the road and over the front wall of the property into the front yard. My sea kayak was washed away. Me and my mate had to pull the old lady in the basement flat out as the sea was coming into her flat. She unfortunately died not long afterward and I'm convinced it was the shock of it all that killed her.
When the storm died down and daylight came, the beach was on the road and the upstairs neighbour's car, which he'd left on the pavement across the road, was gone.
"I did not say that the French will not come, I said they will not come by sea" - Lord St Vincent


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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #34 on: December 21, 2010, 22:32:33 »
I have several, abiding memories:
1) - Looking out of my rear bedroom window at 6.30 am to see a near neighbour and his son desperately hanging on to the roof of their pigeon loft! It worked!

2) - Seeing my cherry tree bending over as if being pulled on a rope.  It survives to this day, but at an angle of 20 degrees.

3)- Perhaps most annoyingly - we had only had a new, brick porch built the week before to replace a rickety wooden one.  If we'd left it another week, the old one would have been demolished by the 'hurricane' and we could have claimed all that lovely insurance lolly!

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #33 on: December 20, 2010, 08:41:33 »
I remember how warm the wind was and the bizarre randomness of the damage. In Strood my Dad and I were woken up by the noise and ventured out into the garden only to beat a hasty retreat because of all the bits of glass flying around - we assumed it was our greenhouse. When it all died down we found our greenhouse was perfectly intact but the neighbours one was in shreds, all the glass from theirs had been blown over the top of ours and into our garden. We lost some tiles and all the fences and lilac trees in our garden were flattened but we got off quite lightly.

Does anyone else remember all the leaves on the remaining trees (most of the trees were still in leaf at the time) turning brown in the days after it? Due to there being so much salt in the wind.


Offline Ted Ingham

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #32 on: December 11, 2010, 10:06:51 »
These batch of photographs were given to a colleague at work.I have scanned them for KHF.The Hurricane hit the Port at 0400 hours on the 16th October 1987.These photographs were taken early morning on 19th October. Clearing up operations had already commenced.

Offline kyn

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #31 on: November 03, 2010, 17:45:03 »
The Yew tree at Chilham had done well up until this hurricane!


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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #30 on: August 02, 2010, 12:37:08 »
The Sealink ferry Hengist beached at the Warren Folkestone.

Soldiers help clear up Sandgate road Folkestone.


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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #29 on: June 12, 2010, 18:13:10 »
Yes, I remember 'The Storm'
Something woke me abruptly in the early hours, I remember lying there thinking that wind sounds fierce, just then there was an almighty krump, I thought bl##dy 'ell thats the chimney stack gone, I went down stairs and looked out the back door to see a carpet of bricks in the yard, so thankfully not the stack.
Next day our firm sent us home, they deemed it too dangerous to do deliveries as it was still very windy, and with so many trees down everywhere, they decided to send us out on Saturday instead.
Here's some pics I took when I got home, but first to set the scene a before shot, this was taken in June '87

Then the day after the storm 16th Oct. backyard

At the Rock Avenue junction, the demise of the Hawthorne, this left just the Laburnum out of the three trees that once graced this island in the early 60's

And further down Rock Avenue

On the Saturday I remember my run took me from Strood down to Tonbridge up to Sevenoaks (sorry Oneoaks), getting round OK until I got to Seal, there all traffic was diverted off the A25, I ended up going through the back lanes, to this day i've no idea how I managed to find my way past the obstructions and back on to the A25 to complete my deliveries at Borough Green & Wrotham Heath, and get back to our base in Strood.

Offline TowerWill

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #28 on: June 03, 2010, 12:45:21 »
Hi delboy,i've only just seen your post and looked back at your photos.Sure was a lot of damage down the Western Docks Station and pier area.It appears that the cleaning shed where i spent five years cleaning trains was gone by 1987.I can't recall if it went that year or earlier.That year must have been about when work was started on the Channel Tunnel.Very nice photos of the havoc down there and the one showing the trains(CEPs i think)brings back memories.

Offline unfairytale

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #27 on: May 20, 2010, 18:31:39 »
I went out on my bike the day after and cycled to Folkestone. spending half the time climbing over trees in the road. I saw the Hengist ashore at the Warren, shame I didn't have my camera.
When you've got your back to wall, there's only one thing to do and that's to turn around and fight. (John Major)

Andy C

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #26 on: May 20, 2010, 14:31:23 »
Slept through it but woke up to the news...and a day off school! The image that sticks most in my mind is the Hengist run aground at Folkestone after she was forced to put to sea. Picture and story here:
Not a good year for the Hengist!

Offline Megapack162

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2010, 11:00:18 »
My brother and I slept though it all, we woke up at about 6am when our Dad shone a torch in our faces once he'd managed to get home from Crayford. He'd spent the night watching the light show as the high tension power lines across the Thames began to snap plunging the area into darkness.

He drove back to the Davis Estate via City Way as the M2 was still closed and described the slow "snake like" journey as they went from one side of the road or pavement to the other side to avoid fallen trees.

I drove into Chatham to see what was needed in my office, parked up where it was safe and then noticed large Government statistics books strewn around the Taxi rank below my office on the 5th and 6th floors of Mountbatten House.

When I walked into the building reception, the guard told me that a window had blown out on the 5th floor so I went up to the 6th instead. The devastation was unbelievable, it was a pair of fireman's access windows on opposite sides of the floor that had blown in / out (the windows were approximately 6' x 6' and rotated halfway up the sides). There was paper for the line printer draped all over the desks and cabinets like toilet rolls thrown at football matches in the past.

The window on the windward side of the building had blown in and was across a colleague's desk (he didn't quite understand that one when he called to say that he couldn't get in) and had bent an HMSO coat rack in a crazy angle.

The window on the leeward side was nowhere to be seen though, just its pivoting frame dangling loose about 60' above military road. When we eventually spotted it, it was laying on the roof of the shops across the other side of Military Road and the glass had ripped the canopies below to shreds.

It took over a year to get the windows replaced and the boards removed, colleagues even bought a cake, lit candles and sang it happy birthday....

Offline delboy

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Re: The 1987 'Hurricane'
« Reply #24 on: April 30, 2010, 17:49:53 »
towerwill, if you look at the pics I took you can see the some of debris that came through the station roof. The shingle was the rail bed that had just been laid in advance of the new train ferry berth being built. At one time the sea was flowing between the platforms at platform level and out through the quayside doors into the harbour.delboy


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