Leeds & West Yorkshire

UK storms: Strong winds shut Bridgewater Place

Bridgewater Place, Leeds
Roads near the building are closed by the council when wind speeds top 45mph

Strong winds gusting to almost 65mph have shut roads around Yorkshire's tallest building and lifted a roof off a swimming pool.

Leeds City Council closed the junction near the 367ft high (112m) Bridgewater Place in Leeds at 17:00 GMT.

The roof of a pool in Salendine Nook, near Huddersfield, was blown off about the same time as 15 children had a lesson, but no one was hurt.

The Met Office forecast winds would ease by Thursday morning.

Leeds City Council said Water Lane, Victoria Road and Neville street would remain closed until about 01:00.

Gusts near the Bridgewater Place building were blamed by a coroner for blowing over a lorry that crushed a pedestrian to death in 2011.

Banning traffic and pedestrians from the junction during high winds is a temporary safety measure the council uses during high winds.

Debris in the car park of the swimming pool
Debris from the roof of the swimming pool was strewn across the car park
Bingley Pool
Cars were damaged when a tree was blown down in Bingley
Lorry blows over on the M62
Strong winds blew a lorry over on the M62

Rachel Wood was in the pool building in Salendine Nook as her four-year-old son took part in his weekly swimming lesson.

"There was a massive bang and debris came into the pool and kids were screaming", she said.

Ms Wood said her son had thought initially the bang was thunder.

Part of the roof and what appeared to be insulation were strewn across the car park, she added.

Strong winds also led to high-sided vehicles being banned from the M62 in West Yorkshire between junctions 22 at Rishworth Moor and 23 at Outlane, where a lorry was blown over earlier.

At Leeds Bradford International Airport flights were cancelled and delayed due to the strong gusts of wind, while East Coast said rail services had been suspended between Doncaster and Leeds on Wednesday evening due to overhead line problems.

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