St Albans district recovers from impact of Storm Ciara

PUBLISHED: 11:40 10 February 2020 | UPDATED: 11:59 10 February 2020

A fallen tree in Flamstead. Picture by Anna Franklin.

A fallen tree in Flamstead. Picture by Anna Franklin.

Archant

The district is recovering in the wake of Storm Ciara, which brought widespread disruption to travel and power networks at the weekend.

Tree damage in Wheathampstead. Picture by Jess Farley.Tree damage in Wheathampstead. Picture by Jess Farley.

After an amber wind warning was implemented by the Met Office on Saturday afternoon, Hertfordshire saw some of its highest gales in a decade - with fallen trees blocking major roads and striking parked cars.

Thameslink and Great Northern train services were brought to a near standstill, while UK Power Networks reported it had over 1,200 field staff on call to help restore power supplies across the East and South East.

As of 8pm on Sunday night, it was estimated more than 1,500 homes in Hertfordshire were without power - and as many as 25,000 in the East of England.

The district council has been dealing with reports of trees being blown down in open spaces and housing land, and their trees team are collating these and prioritising the necessary work. Most of the tidying up will be done by contractor John O'Conner.

A tree down outside the Alban Arena. Picture by Jess Farley.A tree down outside the Alban Arena. Picture by Jess Farley.

Their properties, including council houses, appear to have emerged unscathed and there are no reports of any flooding as the rainfall was not heavy enough for that.

Sporting fixtures were also affected by the weather, including many games scheduled for the Herts Advertiser Sunday League.

President Roy Scott said: "Brian Wright, who has 45 years experience refereeing in the Herts Advertiser Sunday Football league, claimed it was the first time he had ever stopped and abandoned a game due to wind.

"Altogether 14 games were cancelled and the only four matches that were played were played on single pitch facilities as opposed to open parks at Toulimin Drive and Verulamium Park."

Damage at an alpaca farm in Holtsmere End Lane, Redbourn. Picture by Pauline King.Damage at an alpaca farm in Holtsmere End Lane, Redbourn. Picture by Pauline King.

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