WINDS of up to 70 miles per hour caused mayhem across the borough on Thursday.

Gusts with speeds of 74mph were recorded at 8am and power at the Barnsley Hospital went off at about 10.45am, with people being told only to come in if it was an emergency.

Power was restored at about 1pm.

Students at Shafton ALC were sent home because it had no power or water, and Milefield Primary in Grimethorpe was also closed.

Around 1,600 residents in Shafton, Brierley and Cudworth were left without electric from about 2pm.

A 70ft ash tree was blown over on Hall Balk Lane in Barnsley at about noon, blocking the road.

Dave Walshaw, who worked for the Forestry Commission for 23 years, lives close by.

"I heard it come down and I said 'I know that sound'."

A Met Office spokesman said wind speeds fell as the day went on.