VIDEOS: ‘Tornado’ swirls through Leighton Buzzard area

Residents were amazed by a ‘tornado’ that swept through Leighton Buzzard on Monday evening.

Claire Miller, of Drakes Avenue, saw her neighbours trampoline and playhouse fly out of the garden and into the car park.

She said: “It was around 6ish, it appeared to come over the Heath and Reach area, near Shenley Hills.

“We saw a great cloud and the sun beaming down on it and then the tornado appeared and it came through the park outside our homes.

“The house opposite us, we saw their trampoline and playhouse and they were both lifted off the ground, over the fence and into the car park, the trampoline is all mangled now.

“It looks like the tornado brought the storm, it was calm and clear all day and then there was the tornado that left as quick as it had arrived and then we had the storm.”

The sky above Claire Miller's house

The sky above Claire Miller's house

The Met Office have confirmed that it actually was not a tornado that swept the trampoline and playhouse into the air, but a funnel cloud.

A funnel cloud is a cone-shaped cloud which extends from the base of a cloud towards the ground without reaching the ground, they are formed in the same way as a tornado building around a localised area of intensely low pressure.

The main difference is that a funnel cloud does not reach the earth’s surface.

Kim Butler, of Tamar Walk, witnessed the cloud over the fields on the east side of Leighton Buzzard, she said: “It was really amazing, it was about 6ish, we saw a tornado in the fields off Shenley Hill Road.

“It looked like a dust cloud at first and then we saw lots of birds swirling inside and we realised it was a tornado, it was about 3 or 4 storeys tall.”

Siobhan Kos, was at The Wharf when she saw what she describes as a ‘mini vortex’, she said: “I love a storm and I had just arrived from work, I stepped out on to the balcony to watch the lightning and noticed what looked like a vortex.

“I was unsure if it was a smoke at first, but when it started to twist I was sure it was a vortex.

“This was confirmed a few minutes later when leaves started to fall from the clouds.”

Siobhan recorded a video of what she saw, see Youtube clip above.

Nanci Hogan was walking along the canal from The Globe Inn towards the town centre when she saw birds swirling around in the sky, she said: “The atmosphere was really strange, when I saw swirling I heard someone screaming behind me.

“I also heard loud thunder and lightening and the general atmosphere is the kind I associate with tornadoes and I was concerned as I didn’t want to struck by lightning or swept up in a tornado!

“I thought my imagination was working overtime but I am so glad I was not the only one who saw the funnel!”

> Met Office praise Leighton man’s footage of storm as ‘amazing’. Click here

> Did you see the funnel cloud? Get in touch at news@lbobserver.co.uk