Weather Bomb hits Orkney

Published on 11th July 2015 under OSF News & Video
In December 2012 and January 2013 the island of North Ronaldsay was hit by fierce storms and rip tides, the worst in 40 years. Substantial damage was done to the sheep dyke, particularly where it was close to the beach and therefore most vulnerable. A temporary barrier of stock fencing was erected in harsh conditions by six or seven able-bodied islanders in early January 2013 with materials funded by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust. This had the role of sticking plaster, pending the challenge of finding a long-term solution involving major reconstruction.


Each winter seems to bring ever greater storms to the shores of Orkney. On 10 December 2014 a ‘weather bomb’ hit the islands with wind speeds well in excess of 100 mph and the scene in Birsay was captured by BBC News – as shown in the video above. This storm caused further damage to the North Ronaldsay sheep dyke and further emergency fencing was deployed.

1 Comment

  1. richard keen

    I first became aware of the sheep wall on Ronaldsay some while ago in a TV programme – either Country File or Coast – sadly I can’t remember which. Since then I have discovered and learned much more through friends – Hunter and Rita Peace – who are closely involved both with rare breed sheep, the OSF and it’s great efforts to restore and maintain this unique structure. I wish the OSF and the people of Ronaldsay all good wishes in their task which, I’ve little doubt, will meet with complete success.

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