Storm Force is a book about the ways in which Britain has been affected by the wind – in terms of everything from landscape evolution and history to wildlife and energy generation.
The book’s themes are drawn from a number of disciplines including meteorology, geology, coastal geomorphology, archaeology, and natural history; local, military and economic history; and the history of science. Included within the text are dramatic eye-witness accounts of major storms that have pummelled Britain, from the early Middle Ages to the present day.
Research for the book took me all over Britain, including Shetland (where Britain’s highest ever wind speeds have been recorded); Orkney (home to the fabulous sea stack known as the Old Man of Hoy, created by the wind-blown waves); Dungeness (a coastal spit also created by the waves); the coastline of Holderness (which is the fastest-eroding in Europe); the Kent towns of Sevenoaks (which was at the “epicentre” of the “Great Storm” of 1987) and Ramsgate (whose maritime museum includes finds from ships wrecked during the devastating storm of 1703); Canvey Island (devastated by the wind-created tidal wave that blew onto the East coast of England during the storm of 1953); and the island of Tiree in the Inner Hebrides (the windiest inhabited place in Britain).
The photographs you can see on this site were taken during the research for the book. Some of these photographs were included in the book (in black-and-white), though in the end most of the images used in the book came from photo libraries. Photographs presented within the Gallery are organized according to the page of the book to which the image relates.
You can read a sample section of text from the book here: How Britain has been shaped by the wind.
Storm Force by Andrew Beattie