West Dorset has been the victim of some atrocious weather this past week, with power cuts, flooding and general disruption across the county.

Storm Nelson was forecast to bring heavy rain and strong winds followed by flooding, following what was already a tremendously wet March, with just two days rain-free.

Several short bursts of hail were present across Dorset on Wednesday, March 27 in between prolonged periods of rain.

Thunder and lightning were also seen in some areas.

This was followed on Thursday by the brunt of Storm Nelson, which blew over caravans and caused landslips, flooding, cancelled events and created general travel misery.

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: High winds in Lyme RegisHigh winds in Lyme Regis (Image: Graham Hunt Photography)

The Texaco garage at Burton Bradstock had to close after flooding when water started pouring into the building.

Manager Ben Stokes said: "There was no point in trying to stop it. Even if we tried to mop it up it was coming in faster, not a lot we could have done.

"We did have to close Thursday afternoon and then open slightly late on Friday after the clean-up.

"This past year seems to be wetter than any other I can remember here."

Read more: Texaco garage in Burton Bradstock closes following flooding

A car and a caravan overturned on the A35, causing part of the road to close. The road was closed between Chalk Pit Lane and Longlands Lane - police say there were no injuries.

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: The overturned vehicles on the A35The overturned vehicles on the A35 (Image: Lewis Gerolemou)

Simultaneously in West Bay, the storm knocked out power for more than 100 homes and businesses.

The West Bay Discovery Centre was one of those that lost power.

It was cut off as Liberal Democrat Leader Sir Ed Davey and CEO of Surfers Against Sewage, Giles Bristow took shelter for a meeting.

John West, trustee of the centre, which has been busy with visitors this Easter break, said: "We had to close because the storm conditions were bad, and we had no heating or lighting. We obviously lost a few visitors."

Bridport Football Club at St.Mary's Field has seriously flooded, with a number of games being postponed due to its unplayable state. Club Chairman Adrian Scadding said: "It is seriously affecting the income of the club and we have a backlog of games.

"We are going to be playing three a week which is going to be tough.

"The pitch has been flooded and it's not draining properly. It has never happened before, not this bad. This is terrible, it is very frustrating."

Additionally in West Bay the East Cliff experienced yet another rock fall on Friday, March 29 blocking access to the beach.

The village of Shipton Gorge near Bridport flooded when the River Bride burst its banks. Water around a foot deep is seen flowing down Cuckoo Lane in the village. A small landslip next to the road near the entrance to the village toppled a national speed limit sign.

Read more: Village road turned into muddy river as floods hit

Winds were recorded reaching 49mph on Portland, one of the highest speeds recorded in the country on the day.

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: Blustery PortlandBlustery Portland (Image: Helen Moore's Art and Photography)

Read more: People seen climbing over rockfall on beach only hours after cliff gave way

The Abbotsbury Subtropical Gardens cancelled its food fair that was scheduled to run on Saturday, March 30 when its car park and overflow field car park were deemed ' not usable' because of the rain and mud. The event, which is put on in partnership with Dorset Food and Drink, was set to host around 30 local food and drink vendors.

A popular horse racing event, the Cattistock point-to-point, which had been scheduled to take place on Saturday, March 30, had to be cancelled when the rain and wind left the track sodden and ‘unraceable.’

A spokesperson for the event said: “We have regrettably been forced to abandon the Cattistock point-to-point on Saturday, March 30 due to significant overnight rain leaving the course un-raceable. We are making every effort to rearrange the meeting.”

A spokesperson for Bridport Town Council said: "Surprisingly, we didn’t have many requests for help or reports of damage. We cleared a couple of fallen trees and our supply of free sandbags was made available to residents but not many appear to have been taken, perhaps because we distributed over 1,100 to residents in the last significant flooding in November 2023."

This year has already been off to a sodden start. In total, 136.8mm of rain fell from March 1 until March 31, more than double what is usually expected at this time of year. 

The month culminated in 40mm of rain over just days when Storm Nelson released two-thirds of the average monthly rainfall in just two days. A staggering 28mm and 12mm of rain was recorded on March 28 and 29.

This means that Dorset has already seen 390.7mm of rain since January, which is just over half of the annual average of 794.8mm.

This comes after a tremendously wet 2023, which saw constant flooding in Dorset, with storms and poor weather battering the coast. The A35 between Bridport and Dorchester was often closed due to flooding and some neighbouring rivers such as Groves Garden Centre and Bridport Football Club, were forced to close due to the flooding.

Read more: Aerial photographs show damage after rain