UK festival: Tornado hits Britain sending tents and chairs flying ’60 feet’ into air

A tornado sent chairs, tents and gazebos flying 60ft into the air as stunned British festivalgoers were caught up in swirling winds.

The mini-tornado left behind a scene of destruction, with a number of tents ripped up and left hanging from overhead wires and nearby treas.

Videos widely shared online showed Sunday’s aftermath at the annual Boomtown festival in Winchester, Hampshire, as it appeared some objects got stuck after being engulfed by the high winds.

The dramatic footage shows tents swirling in the sky as onlookers watch the bizarre event unfold.

In one clip, rubbish is seen circulating towards the edge of the campsite where other debris is seen strewn across the grass.

Samuel James, a 23-year-old student, from Surrey, who witnessed the chaos, told The Daily Telegraph: “It came through the bottom of the valley, picked up people’s tents and completely threw them out of the site.”

He added: “Gazebos and tents flew into the air as well. It lasted for about 30 seconds to a minute.

“Luckily we weren’t in the path of it. You could see it twisting dust-up about 60 feet into the air and it looked like a twister.”

The Met Office said it was possible a tornado had ripped through the Hampshire festival after examining the footage.

A spokesperson said the tornado was “indirectly linked to the heat” as it could not have happened without the development of thunderstorms that were seen following the latest heatwave.

They added: “Without knowing the exact time that footage was taken, it’s hard to confirm what the specific weather set-up was.

“There were showers in that region around 5pm on Sunday, and the environment of that would have supported some short-lived tornado activity.

“If it wasn’t around then, there’s a chance it could be a ‘dust devil’ – which is effectively some swirling air that can occur when the ground is dry and high temperatures produce strong updrafts.”

Boomtown is held annually on the Matterley Estate in South Downs National Park, near Winchester, Hampshire.

A spokesman for Boomtown said they were aware of what happened and no injuries had been reported.

Over the same weekend, a mini tornado was filmed sending music lovers’ tents high into the air at Boardmasters Festival in Cornwall.

Footage shot by shocked campers showed the canvas homes flying around 100ft off the ground, with people’s belongings also going flying in the process.

One of the tents was seen colliding and wrapping itself around an unsuspecting festival-goer by the main arena.

Power line builder Steven, from Devon, said: “I am down here with a friend performing at the festival and saw it starting, with not many people around noticing.

“There was no wind at all, just very hot, and then you could see it building up and spiralling with dust.

“Then it started ripping tents up and headed toward the main arena.

“I’m not sure if there was any damage to the main tents but I saw at least 10 tents ripped up and sent over 100 metres in the air.

“They were being thrown across the campsite, with one coming down and wrapping around the guy walking.”

The Mirror contacted the Met Office and Boomtown for a comment.