An update on the storm on All Souls Day

The storm that tore through Jersey on the night of 2 November left a path of destruction across the Island, uprooting thousands of trees, ripping roofs from people’s homes and raining down hailstones the size of tennis balls on cars and through windows. 

The storm peaked at midnight with a tornado – a storm within a storm -  where winds reached 160+ mph and caused a 4.9 mile long trail of devastation. Many churches across the Island were affected, with trees uprooting graves in cemeteries, roof tiles flying off and embedding themselves 100 metres away and, most notably St Nicholas Church in the Parish of St. Clement, which stood in the direct path of the tornado.  

St Clement lost most of its roof and some of its windows were blown out but nearly a month on, the recovery and rebuilding has begun.  Insurance assessors have been busy, as have scaffolding firms, tree surgeons and roofers, some of whom have come over to the Island from the mainland, as there are insufficient companies in Jersey.  St. Clement’s Church is being extensively repaired but many others with less damage must wait their turn. 

About 80 Islanders have been evacuated from their homes and remain displaced whilst others have lost their possessions in the storm and its aftermath.  Many walks around the Island are still closed, most notable the beautiful “railway walk” (see picture – there is a path through there somewhere) and it is estimated that it will take approximately a year for the clean up to be completed. 

It is a difficult time of the year for the Island, as we remember the two tragedies from a year ago, when 10 people were killed by a gas explosion and three people from the fishing community lost at sea after a collision.  We give thanks, however, that no one last their lives in Storm Ciaran but please continue to pray for our Island community and those affected by the events of the 2 November.


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