Your story – Fiona Stokes

Our house is in an exposed position looking out over Loch Erisort to the West. While this gives us a wonderful view, it does mean we get the brunt of the prevailing winds. This year we have lost our roof tiles from that corner of the house for the 3rd time since moving here in 2009. Twice we have huddled together as a family, listening to the slates skittering across the roof above us and come out in the morning to find them impaled in the ground, like shark fins!

I don’t remember the date of the first time it happened, but I know in 2015 it was particularly bad and a few houses in the village that sit along the loch side had tiles stripped. Our 2 sons were of primary age then and we settled them down to sleep on camp beds in the sitting room, as this is part of the house that’s oldest with the thickest walls (the storms always sound worse at night)!

By 2022, we had done some renovations and our house is now open plan going up to the ceiling in the centre. Again we sat in the sitting room listening to them being picked off, but this time we could hear it much more clearly and were worried that they might smash a skylight in the roof – thankfully they didn’t. We had our shoes and coats on ready to evacuate but I’m not sure where we would have gone – I didn’t want to be outside in that weather, even to get into the car! Our insurers have been very understanding, but we are worried that it will not be the last time we lose roof slates. Really we should get the whole roof replaced with a different tiling system, but that will have to wait for now.

There was plenty of damage outside too, we installed a polytunnel in 2020 and that’s suffered the impact of something flying into it at great speed. Trees have been snapped off at the trunk on our croft and plenty around the area have been uprooted. With more extreme weather events predicted from Climate Change, we need to put in place resilience measures to help people manage when it happens again.


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