Tag Archives: blizzard

Festival of Postcards: Eastbourne after the Great Blizzard

14 Dec

The theme for the latest Festival of Postcards hosted by Evelyn at A Canadian Family blog is white.

Given the time of year and the fact that there are rumours going around that we might have a White Christmas in Sussex this year (I very much doubt it!), there was only really one choice of card from my collection.

This is rather different to the usual seaside view of Eastbourne, Sussex showing the promenade and pier. There are a few figures on the beach, but no tourists enjoying ice cream in the sunshine. Although judging by the number of footprints it does look like there had been plenty of people out strolling along the promenade.

The “great blizzard” was on the 28th December 1908 and of course the heavy snowfall wasn’t confined to just Eastbourne or Sussex, but much of Britain appears to have been affected.

According to The Sussex Weather Book (Froglets Publications and Frosted Earth, 1991) in Eastbourne, “so fierce was the blizzard on the sea front that the snow and mist rendered the sea invisible”.

The Brighton Herald newspaper (quoted in The Sussex Weather Book) described the scene:

There is nothing that so utterly transforms a town as such a fall of snow as that of this week. It brings with it a rare witchery of beauty, yet a rare sense of desolation. The beauty is in the encrusting of the trees, the silvering of the bushes and the mantling of lawns in purest white. The effect of desolation was heightened by the profound hush. Indeed the strange effect of deep snow to the townsman is the silence that it brings”.

Ironically the ice skating rink at Brighton had to be closed because “snow was percolating through the roof and covering the floor”.

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