BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific North Midlands/East West/South-West London/South North Midlands/East West/South-West London/South
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: UK: England  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Education
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Monday, 23 September, 2002, 15:17 GMT 16:17 UK
Dudley epicentre left unshaken
Brick Kiln Lane, Dudley
The earthquake measured 4.8 on the Richter scale
Brick Kiln Lane in Gornalwood is said to be the epicentre of the earthquake that shook England and Wales in the early hours of Monday morning. Georgina Pattinson and Louise Scrivens met the residents of the quiet Dudley street.

The exact centre of the most powerful earthquake to hit Britain for a decade was a sleepy street in the heart of the Black Country.

Across England and Wales, people were woken from their beds by the tremor which began at 0054 BST.

The earthquake - which measured 4.8 on the Richter scale - caused minor damage to homes across the West Midlands.

Alice Trevis
Mrs Trevis was scared by the shaking

But while the residents of Brick Kiln Lane, may have been woken from their slumbers, they found their property untouched and seemed more shaken by the media attention that followed than the tremor itself.

One pensioner actually thought it could be burglars.

"I was watching a film when I heard this loud bang," said Alice Trevis, who has lived in the quiet lane for 17 years.

"I thought I'd got burglars in my loft and phoned my son straight away."


The pub shook and rocked from side to side, right to the foundations

Sue Holloway, pub manager

Mrs Trevis said luckily none of her precious possessions had been broken.

The semi-detached houses along the street, which sell for more than 150,000, are part of a quiet residential area of Dudley.

From the top of the hill, the beginnings of the Staffordshire countryside is visible.

On Monday, the residents of Brick Kiln Lane certainly had something to talk about.

In fact, they were amazed to find themselves the focus of attention, even if it was an early morning rude awakening.

The Crooked House pub, just opposite Brick Kiln Lane, is a lop-sided inn that looks as though it had been hit by an earthquake years before.

The Crooked House
Despite its appearance, the pub was untouched

Sue Holloway, relief manager for the pub, said she had been clearing away the glasses when she heard the earthquake and thought it was a plane crash.

"The pub shook and rocked from side to side, right to the foundations," she said.

"I looked out of the window and everything seemed to be OK so I went to bed."

Luckily, no glasses or bottles were smashed by the tremor and the bric a brac and ornaments decorating the pub were left intact.

Jonathan Southall, a community nursing assistant who lives just off Brick Kiln Lane, said he was already awake and reading the newspaper.

"The first thing I felt was the chair move," he said.

"Then the piano started to move and the china cabinet was moving.

Susan James with Molly and Rocky
Molly and Rocky soon went back to sleep

"My brother was watching a horror film and we knew straight way it was an earthquake."

But the old tale of dogs knowing when an earthquake is imminent was proved untrue by two of the lane's residents.

Susan James, the owner of Rocky and Molly, two Chinese Sharpei dogs, said neither of them showed any signs of uneasiness on Sunday or gave any warning growls.

In fact, four-year-old Rocky was unconcerned by the event.

"Molly was awake but didn't bark and Rocky looked up at me in disgust and went back to sleep," she said.

"They normally bark at anyone who comes into the house but they obviously didn't feel this was an emergency."


Click here to go to BBC Birmingham Online
See also:

23 Sep 02 | UK
23 Sep 02 | UK
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more England stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more England stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes