Family home ‘destroyed’ after 400-year-old oak tree crashes through roof

Dominic Good, 57, was in the middle of a conference call at his home on Friday morning when he was interrupted by an ‘almighty crash’.

19 February 2022

A 400-year-old oak tree uprooted by Storm Eunice has destroyed part of a family home in Essex.

Dominic Good, 57, was in the middle of a work conference call at his home on Friday morning when he was interrupted by an “almighty crash”.

The father-of-two said his family are “very lucky” that no-one was injured after the huge oak tree crashed through the roof of their detached house in Brentwood.

Winter weather Feb 19th 2022
Sven Good, 23 sits on his tree damaged Mazda MX-5 outside the family home in Stondon Massey, near Brentwood (Nicholas T Ansell/PA)

He told the PA news agency: “A big gust just snapped the base of the massive oak tree in our garden, that is probably around 400 years old.

“The whole tree fell on the north-west corner of the house and the roof took the brunt of it.

“The roof is pretty much destroyed, and my son and my daughter’s bedrooms are completely filled with rubble.”

Mr Good said his wife Emma, his 23-year-old son Sven and his son’s girlfriend Anna Parnanen had all been in different rooms of the house working when the tree crashed down.

His son also had his Mazda MX5 car “completely crushed” by the branches of the toppled oak.

Mr Good said: “My son was in the room directly below (where the tree hit) so he actually witnessed it.

“He just grabbed his laptop and grabbed the dog and ran out of the room.”

The family had predicted there could be some storm damage from the huge gusts of wind but “never expected” the level of destruction that transpired.

“I was concerned that a branch might strike the house or something because it was it was incredibly strong wind, but that was something else,” said Mr Good.

“We were very lucky that none of the dogs or the people that were in the house were affected in any way… other than just breathing in dust.”

Winter weather Feb 19th 2022
The 400-year-old oak tree was uprooted by Storm Eunice (Nicholas T Ansell/PA)

The family were able to spend the night in their home but are unsure as yet if this will be possible once the tree is removed.

Mr Good said: “We spent the rest of Friday trying to salvage stuff out of the rooms but everything is covered in dust and rubble and was just a general mess.

“I think probably once they remove the tree from the house they will have to knock down quite a large part of the house and rebuild it.

“We will just have to speak to the insurance company and take it from there.”

Meanwhile, at least four people have been killed in the UK and Ireland as a result of storm, said to be one of the worst in decades.

The bad weather is set to continue all weekend and the Met Office has issued a yellow warning for wind covering the entire south coast and south-west Wales until 6pm on Saturday, and a yellow snow warning for parts of northern England from 11am until 3pm.

On Sunday, a yellow warning for wind is in place for England, Wales, and south-west Scotland, while a yellow rain warning covers Lancashire and Cumbria.

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