A new edition of ‘Black Thursday. The Essex Hailstorm of 1897’ has just been published.
A few years’ ago, while reading ‘Romantic Essex’ by Reginald Becket (1901), my attention was drawn to a particular passage: “Ingatestone … was the centre of the hundred square miles of Essex which was devastated in a quarter of an hour by a hailstorm on that black Midsummer Day of 1897. When I passed through it at harvest-time in that same year, the crops seemed to have been cut off a few inches above the ground, though no harvest had been reaped”.
Although I had lived in Ingatestone for many years, and now live in Blackmore, I had never heard about this event. So, with the intention of writing a short article for a local history group magazine, curiosity and research got the better of me and I ended up writing a short book.
I subsequently found some additional information so have incorporated it into a second edition.
The book is on sale at the Priory Church of St Laurence, Blackmore, and St Peter & St Paul Church, Stondon Massey, priced £1.50. For a copy by post contact me: the charge including postage and packaging will be £2.50. All money raised will go to church funds.
For more information online see the earlier blog entry: http://blackmorehistory.blogspot.com/2007/12/area-essex-storm-of-1897.html