The Wokingham Paper

Storm Ciara blows off the roof and brings down trees across Wokingham borough

Storm Ciara
A tree fell on to a roof of a home in Finchampstead Picture: Phil Creighton

STORM CIARA brought some of the strongest gusts felt in the UK for many years: up to 97mph was recorded on Sunday.

While Wokingham escaped the worst of its blast, the borough was still affected.

A number of trees caused problems to roads and houses.

In the early hours of Sunday, a tree fell from the alleyway next to California Ratepayers Hall in Finchampstead. Although it hit the roof of home in California Place, off Barkham Ride, it did not cause any real damage.

And a tree fell on the A329m, just in front of a Waitrose delivery lorry. A spokesperson for the supermarket, which is based in Bracknell, confirmed that the driver was able to stop safely, the cab was not hit and he was not injured.

Storm Ciara
Picture: Natalie Maybin

Reader Natalie Maybin was a passenger in a car that had a lucky escape.

She said: “We were lucky to miss this tree coming down in front of us at Forresters Way just before the Golden Retriever pub”.

Thames Valley Police closed the road while Highways England cleared the tree.

Trains were delayed on Sunday morning after trees fell on the line between Wokingham and Ascot.

Speed restrictions were in place across the network for the whole day.

Storm Ciara
Yeldall Manor is looking to raise £50,000 to help replace damaged roofs across it site

Yeldall Manor, the drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in Hare Hatch, had the roof of one its barns damaged by the storm.

Sue Hedger, the charity’s communication manager, said: “There was some damage to vehicles and equipment as well as the roof, which has sustained serious damage. We hope that this will be covered by insurance, although it also comes on top of the need to repair and replace the whole roof of the Main House.

“The roof may have low-grade asbestos, so we have had to take precautions and exercise great care in removing some tools for residents to continue their work on the estate.”

The charity has launched a fundraising campaign, in a bid to raise the necessary £50,000 for repairs.

It can be found at www.justgiving.com/campaign/Yeldallroof

In Arborfield, a tree branch fell on to School Road and it was cut up by nearby a tradesman with police officers helping to remove it.

A tree also came down in Blagrove Lane, Wokingham, but residents worked together to chop it up and remove it from the road.

In Woosehill, trees in Fox Hill Woods were reported to have fallen over.

There was some minor flooding in Swallowfield from the River Blackwater, but cars were still able to drive through it safely.

Storm Ciara
A tree came down in Southlands Road, Wokingham

A common sight across the borough was fallen fence panels and small debris on the pavements and footpaths. These included tiles from buildings in Wokingham’s Denmark Street, along with building materials that have been blown around by the winds.

Another weather warning has been issued for this weekend – Storm Dennis is expected on Saturday and Sunday, but will not be as impactful as Ciara

Storm Ciara
Trees were uprooted due to Storm Ciara Picture: Phil Creighton

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