December 8th The Result of The Great Storm (1703)

On this day in 1703, the south of England counted the results of the worst storm yet recorded which became known as The Great Storm.  In London, 2,000 chimneystacks were blown down, the New Forest lost 4,000 oaks, the roof of Westminster Abbey was ruined and Queen Anne took shelter in a cellar at St James’s Palace to avoid a collapsing roof. Hundreds of people drowned on the Somerset Levels and at least four Royal navy vessels sank and 1,000 sailors drowned on the Goodwin Sands.

From the perspective of this almanack, however, there were two significant events.  One ship, anchored on the Helford River, broke its moorings and, with only one boy on board, it arrived, eight hours later,  on the Isle of Wight, 200 miles away. The most significant, physical, damage in Cornwall was to Winstanley’s Eddystone Lighthouse (pictured right) which was completely destroyed, killing all six people present including its designer and builder, Henry Winstanley (August 27th).


                                                                                                                                 Previous                                           Next