Not everyone will remember the Great Storm of October 15th/16th 1987, but this writer remembers it only too well. At the time I had a flourishing business that operated nationally and managed to achieve what is many people’s dream – the big house in the country.
I lived in a small village (pop. 2,000) in Kent in a large Victorian house built in 1882 surrounded by fields and woodland. In the summer the fields were full of young bullocks and in the winter full of sheep. I remember the Great Storm vividly because trees were felled all over the village and we couldn’t get out to drive to work. My wife and son were away in our seaside apartment.
The bad news was that all our power went down. There were not enough electricians to carry out all the repairs, so after three or four days, many were shipped over from Northern Ireland to help out. The freezer was full of food, but that all had to be thrown away very quickly. But never mind, we were promised that power would be restored soon.
Gradually, homes from the outside of the village on my road running into the village centre got power back on. So did homes running from the village centre down towards mine. But there were about ten of us still with no power.
And so it was for thirteen days! The nights were drawing in and we were sitting in the dark. No TV. No washing machine. No electric cooker (fortunately we had an Aga as well).
If I had only known about – or even thought about – getting an emergency power source in the UK. But it never occurred to me. Certainly, we did get occasional power outages from time to time, but only for a few hours, so nothing too serious. But thirteen days!
It turned out that the electricians working from the village centre towards the other lot working from outside the village had somehow between them missed out our ten houses in the middle!
Speaking from experience, I wouldn’t recommend anyone to be without an emergency power source in the UK. At Blades Power Generation you can find a generator that will kick in automatically when your power goes down, and there are also other models that need to be started manually. But don’t find yourself stuck out in the sticks with no power for nearly two weeks!