How the Kibworth community rallied together after a hailstorm that will go down in local history

Villagers are now counting the cost after the golf ball sized hail stones caused damage and led to flooding

Thursday, 22nd July 2021, 12:23 pm
Hail stones the size of golf balls rained down on Kibworth. This photo was taken at Kibworth Golf Club.

The amazing community spirit in Kibworth has helped the village recover after a hailstorm that will go down in local history.

As the rest of the country was experiencing a heatwave, hail stones the size of golf balls suddenly rained down in the village on July 20, smashing car windows and conservatories and damaging homes.

The rain also caused serious flooding to some homes.

Hail stones the size of golf balls rained down on Kibworth. This photo was taken at Kibworth Golf Club.

Bizarrely, the storm seemed to hit Kibworth and nowhere else - people living a few miles away knew nothing about it until they saw the damage down the road.

But local councillor Kevin Feltham said the village truly came together to help each other out.

"I have never seen anything like it before," he said.

"This will go down as The Great Kibworth Hail Storm of July 20, 2021, and people will be talking about it for years.

"But after it happened the community spirit really kicked in."

As well as being a county councillor for the area, Dr Feltham is also involved with both the Kibworth Beauchamp and Kibworth Harcourt Parish Councils and said emergency plans previously put into place helped to get the message out to others.

This meant the Leicestershire and Rutland Resilience team were in touch straight away, offering help. And residents all sprang into action, helping those homes that had been flooded.

A call went out across the village to help the Kibworth Court Care Home - and people turned up with towels and other things from their homes to help out.

Luckily, no one was hurt across the area but there have been many reports of gardens being destroyed, smashed cars and damage to homes.

Recalling the night on July 20, Cllr Feltham said that he ran to his car when he heard the rain to make sure it was properly closed.

"Four steps later and I was drenched!" he said.

"I had to stay in my car for a few minutes and then make the dash back to the house. And then the bigger lumps came down and that's when the serious damage occurred. I have never seen anything like it before."

He was left with damage to his guttering - but it could have been a lot worse.

Members at Kibworth Gold Course watched on in horror as the hail stones caused damage to the course and their cars.

The course was closed yesterday (Wednesday) and today due to the damage from the hail stones. But staff hope the course will reopen tomorrow (Friday) - thanks to the amazing work of volunteers who came in their droves to help the greenkeepers work their magic.

Many others village reported smashed windows and severely dented cars - some with their back windows smashed.

The hail started at about 5.45pm. The stones grew in size and the storm stopped at about 7pm.

Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service said it received 17 emergency calls form residents in the Kibworth area reporting flooding to their properties.

Neighbours were out helping those people whose homes were flooded - another great example of the community spirit that helped Kibworth get through the weather phenomenon, said Cllr Feltham.