1. ITV Report

The Great Storm of 1987 - 25 years on

A bungalow at Oulton Broad near Lowestoft, Suffolk is severely damaged in the Great Storm of 1987 Photo: ITV Anglia

The storm of October 1987 was the most damaging weather event to hit the British Isles since 1703. The winds reached hurricane force and gusted at more than 100 mph. It ripped down trees and power lines, tore off roofs and tossed caravans and light aircraft over. Eighteen people were killed in the devastation.

Great Storm factfile

It brought an outcry over the weather forecast which had largely failed to predict what was to come with the first severe weather warning issued only hours before the strongest winds hit. The storm's rapid development in the Bay of Biscay meant its final path towards Britain and its ultimate strength was difficult to predict using the data and forecasting techniques available at the time.

A lorry is blown over on the Orwell Bridge in Suffolk during the Great Storm of 1987. Credit: ITV Anglia

It's estimated the storm cost the UK insurance industry £1.4 billion pounds. The storm struck when most trees were still in full leaf and their grip in the ground was weakened by the waterlogged soil. Much of the damage was due to trees falling onto power lines, houses, roads and railways.

The storm left hundreds of thousands of people without power and it some cases mains electricity wasn't restored for more than a week. It's estimated 15 million trees were felled.

Click here for pictures from Essex photographer Derek Argent who shot the damage in the Burham-on-Crouch area.

Winds gusting at more than 100 mph blew caravans over along the East coast. Credit: ITV Anglia

Below is a video of coverage of the Great Storm on the About Anglia programme in October 1987.

What are your memories of the Great Storm of 1987? Do you have any pictures or video you would like to share? Contact us at

Click here for more about the Great Storm and how it hit the rest of the country.

A light aircraft tossed onto its back at Luton airport during the Great Storm of 1987. Credit: ITV Anglia

More on this story

  • Remembering the Great Storm

    On the 16th of October 1987 the South East corner of England woke to scenes of devastation. Here are some of your memories of that night.

  • Factfile: The 1987 Great Storm

    It's the 25th anniversary of the Great Storm which hit the south east corner of England without warning on 15th/16th October 1987.