Pictures: Retro - Terrible storms cost lives and devastated buildings

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The country is still recovering from the battering it got from Storm Doris this week, so we’re looking back at terrible gales that wreaked havoc locally.

South Yorkshire escaped the worst of the October 1987 storm that weatherman Michael Fish famously said wouldn’t hit Britain, but was hit hard on other occasions.

Picture shows the roof of Five Ways Garage, South Street, Sheffield, which blew off in the gale - 15 December 1982
Pictured are two of the men who were in the garage - left to right John Kettle and Steve Palmer -

Picture shows the roof of Five Ways Garage, South Street, Sheffield, which blew off in the gale - 15 December 1982 Pictured are two of the men who were in the garage - left to right John Kettle and Steve Palmer -

We looked back to the terrible hurricane-force winds of February 1962 a few weeks ago but, as you can see from the photograph on the front of Retro, people living in prefabs have suffered in other years.

Friends and neighbours gathered round to help Mr and Mrs Alan Jenkinson after their home at 45 Standish Road, Shirecliffe, was blown down on March 2, 1956.

In January 1976, 18 families at Treeton, Rotherham were made homeless when gales ripped through a terrace at Bole Hill.

Roofs were ripped away and chimneys collapsed “like a pack of dominoes”.

Dennis Mitchell was putting up a curtain to keep the draught out of a bedroom when masonry from the chimney crashed down next to him.

He said: “Two of my four girls, Angela, aged two, and Jane, aged five, had been in the bedroom not long before but had come down because the noise was upsetting them.”

At Thorne, Doncaster, 65 people were evacuated from their caravan homes.

Many more homes were damaged in the region as snow also fell. Broken electricity lines had to be repaired.

The damage included parked vehicles destroyed by a gable end falling on them in Attercliffe Common and the destruction of a 100ft greenhouse in Ecclesfield.

Roofs and windows were damaged in Crookes and Crosspool and Norfolk Park flats swayed in the wind.

The Hope Valley was cut off as drivers were warned not to attempt to reach there.

Neighbour Ronald Flynn was listening to the radio when “the place was suddenly in chaos. Dozens of bricks came down and there was soot and smoke everywhere”.

In early February 1990, popular Attercliffe man Mohammed Rashid, aged 48, died from head injuries after masonry fell on him at his mosque in Bodmin Street. His five-year-old grandson was injured.

Donna Jenkinson, aged 11, also died in the same storm at the end of January when a tree fell on to her mother’s car as they drove home from a birthday party on the A60 at Welbeck.

The 76mph winds were strong enough to take the roof off a council bungalow in Kendray, Barnsley, one of 900 damaged, and flip over a double-decker bus in Dore.

High winds again left a trail of chaos in March 1994. Steel cladding was ripped from the wall of Wynsors World of Shoes in Infirmary Road, Kelvin, and dumped on to staff cars parked alongside the wall.

Manageress Pat Thorpe said: “It’s still business as usual for us. No customers were involved which is the main thing.”

In Christmas 1997 gales hit again.

Mark Borrows of Monkworth Road, Rawmarsh was horrified to return home to see a 30ft tree had blown down on to his home - but amazed that not even a window was broken.

His brother-in-law Paul Leighton had been inside watching TV when “I heard this huge bang. I went outside to see this tree propped up against the house.”

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