Strange cloud over Great Yarmouth has people reaching for their cameras

Giant cloud over Great Yarmouth, posted by Rick Townsend Giant cloud over Great Yarmouth, posted by Rick Townsend

Tuesday, August 12, 2014
1:29 PM

An immense rain cloud likened by hundreds of people to a UFO, in the Great Yarmouth area, caused a flurry of activity on social media last night.

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Giant cloud over Great Yarmouth, picture by Sam WolfGiant cloud over Great Yarmouth, picture by Sam Wolf

An immense rain cloud likened by hundreds of people to a UFO, in the Great Yarmouth area, caused a flurry of activity on social media last night.

At around 7.30pm the huge, low, slow moving cloud loomed into view.

The rays of the setting sun inside the cloud produced an effect many had never witnessed before, deep grey into light grey and yellows.

Many amazed residents shared their pictures of the spectacle on the Great Yarmouth Mercury Facebook page, describing the scene as “Armageddon”, “freaky”, “it was the strangest sky I have ever seen” and one likening it to a “space ship!”

Nearly 1000 people watching the Extreme Stunt Show at Yarmouth Racecourse had made their way hoping to see spectacular performances but the creeping cloud threatened to ruin the show.

When hail as large as peas fell followed by torrential rain the spectators scattered to find shelter in trade tents.

Ian Batey, director of the show, said around 300 spectators left the performance while up to 600 braved the rain and stayed until the end, some even waiting to get autographs.

The base of the cloud, according to Weatherquest, was roughly 1,200ft off the ground while the top reached a height of up to 35,000ft.

Steve Western, the duty forcaster at Weatherquest, said the cloud was a typical Cumulonimbus but what may have made the sight more dramatic was the setting sun on the western horizon that lit the cloud.

The racecourse recorded 20mm of rainfall in under an hour.

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