Britain’s earliest known tornado, occurred on October 23, 1091. The church at St. Mary le Bow in central London was badly damaged, with four rafters - each 7.9 m long (converted from the reported 26 ft) - being driven into the ground (composed of heavy London Clay) with such force that only 1.2 m (converted from the reported 4 ft) protruded above the surface. Other churches in the area were demolished, as were over 600 (mostly wooden) houses.
Estimates say it’s strength was T8, meaning it could, in comparison, hurl cars great distances.
image: Toni Grote