Natural shows in the skies

June 28 2021

Natural shows in the skies

Natural shows in the skies

PEOPLE living in the Downend area were able to see two unusual natural phenomena in the space of a week.
A funnel cloud was spotted in the skies above Bromley Heath on the evening of June 6 and captured on video by resident Tim Donovan, who agreed to share the image with Voice readers.
The Met Office says funnel clouds, also known as tuba, are "extending, spinning fingers of cloud that reach towards the ground," similar to a tornado, but never touch it.
They form when a rotating column of wind draws in water droplets to make visible an area of intense low pressure. If a funnel cloud does make contact with the ground and produce a tornado, very strong winds can be produced, potentially causing damage.
A Met Office spokesperson said the number of funnel clouds which form in the UK is not known but between 30 and 35 tornadoes are recorded each year.
He added: "The difference between the two is simply that funnel clouds don’t reach the ground, tornadoes do, although in the UK they are a lot less powerful than those in parts of the USA."
The funnel cloud was spotted as the area went through a period of cloudy weather, which also affected views of a partial eclipse of the sun on June 10.
The moon partly obscured the sun during the event, known as an annular solar eclipse or ‘ring of fire’ at its maximum in the far north of the globe.
Here, the moon appeared to take a bite out of the sun in the late morning.
For most of the event clouds completely blotted out views of the sun but for a short while they thinned enough for the Voice to capture a picture from Downend.
The next partial eclipse visible in the UK will be on October 25 next year – the next total eclipse over the country will not be until 2090.