Tornado causes £100,000 worth of damage to farm

By James Davies   |   Reporter   |
Wednesday 13th April 2022 9:58 am
@ThatJamesDavies
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The damage caused by the T3 tornado that hit Pennal on Wednesday Credit: Deilwen Breese/TORRO

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Weather investigators have confirmed that a storm that hit Pennal last week was a tornado.

The tornado lifted an ewe into the air and caused around £100,000 worth of damage to a property in Pennal near Machynlleth on Wednesday afternoon.

Deilwen Breese, who owns Gogarth Farm Hall, told the Cambrian News how powerful winds hit her property with “unbelievable force”, even lifting an ewe into the air last week.

Storm investigators from Tornado and Storm Research Organisation - or TORRO - have now confirmed that the storm that hit Pennal was a T3 tornado, slightly weaker than the T4 tornado that hit Bow Street in November 2006, causing widespread damage in the south of the village including the local car dealership.

Investigators visited Gogarth Farm and said: “We look for evidence of objects that have been lofted into violently spinning air, so that they may land in odd places, even being thrown backwards against the general wind-field on the day.

“We look for objects that have become projectiles, hurled with force into the ground.

“We look for sharp divides between severe damage and no damage, because tornadoes cut damage-swathes with almost surgical precision.

“All of these were found in abundance at Gogarth Hall Farm.”

A squall line came in off Cardigan Bay, giving many places an intense downpour which led to a tornado forming in Pennal.

Ms Breese wasn’t home when it all started but that her husband had to rush inside to safety.

She said: “It all started at around 10am, I wasn’t home but my husband was outside and saw a chair flying through the air with unbelievable force and had to rush inside.

“As I was coming home it was impossible to get to the house as trees had been snapped in half and blocked the way.”

Ms Breese explained that damage to the property was “horrendous” as roofs had been ripped apart.

She added: “Slate was ripped from the roof and thrown across the farm and even over the road, and as it was stripped off, it left holes in the roof.

“The wind power was immense, the amount of force needed to lift a ewe off the ground is unbelievable.

“To get everything fixed, we’re looking at upwards of £100,000.”

However, she said that she was happy to have her family.

She said: “We have to look on the bright side in times like these, I’m grateful to have my family, all of us are okay and no one is hurt.

“Someone could’ve been killed.”

While she said that it had been a “tearful” period, she was thankful for the support of the local area.

“Myself and my husband both acknowledge and are very thankful for the help we’ve had locally.

“People have been amazing.

“Within hours of it all happening, the property had been scaffolded up and tarpaulin has been donated to make the property waterproof.”

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