Heavy rain and winds cause destruction across Mansfield and Ashfield

Heavy rain and strong winds likened to a ‘mini tornado’ left homeowners in Mansfield and Shirebrook picking up the pieces.

By Isabel Dunmore
Monday, 27th January 2014, 3:32 pm

Tiles were ripped off properties, trees uprooted and garden furniture and fences ruined after powerful winds struck over the weekend.

Justin Winter, who lives on the badly affected Bracken Ridge Estate in Shirebrook, described how everything went black before he heard what sounded like a train coming.

He said: “I was just about to step outside when the skies turned black and my fence panelling started shaking.

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“My wife told me I had better stay in, then all of a sudden we heard what sounded like a train and the wind picked up.

“Before we knew it, all of our garden furniture got lifted up and carried across the garden, it pulled down my fencing and bent the concrete posts, I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Trevor Allen, who has lived on the estate for 12 years, said the sudden change in weather was terrifying.

“When we first moved in strong winds ripped off our roof tiles, but we’ve never experienced anything like this.

“It only lasted for a few minutes but in that short space of time it caused a lot of damage. It was terrifying.”

Mansfield RUFC’s match against Peterborough was also brought to a standstill when lightning and flash flooding struck the pitch and players were called off for their own safety.

Residents on Heath Avenue and Stainsby Drive in Mansfield have been working through the weekend to repair the damage caused by toppled 70 foot trees.

Jean and Mike Neaum, who live on Stainsby Drive, said they were lucky their garden separated their house from a giant oak tree brought down by the wind.

Mrs Neaum said: “We dread to think what would have happened if it had been any closer to the house. The fallen tree reached our trellising and luckily only landed on top of a neighbours shed.

“All the neighbours have lost trees around here, some of which must be 100 years old. There will be lots of firewood to go round, but it is going to be a big clean up effort.”

There were around eight different logging and tree felling firms called out to Heath Avenue at the weekend to help with the clean up.

Nottinghamshire County Council said its duty response team attended to three trees which came down at the height of the ‘tornado’ and also dealt with some localised flooding.

Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue said the number of calls it received over the weekend was low and not affected by the storms.