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Watch video - is this a dust devil or funnel cloud?

PUBLISHED: 16:39 18 July 2018 | UPDATED: 16:39 18 July 2018

Weather experts say it was not a mini tornado Picture: CHERLY RICHARSON

Weather experts say it was not a mini tornado Picture: CHERLY RICHARSON

Archant

People in Colchester were amazed to see a spiral of dust forming today - but weather experts say it was not a mini tornado.

Cheryl Richardson spotted the strange phenomenon around lunchtime, and quickly captured it on video.

“It was around 12.30. I was sitting in the Princess Charlotte having some lunch,” she said.

“There was no noise - it took a second to realise what it was. We were a little shocked to see it,

“I noticed it and pointed to my partner as at first I thought it was smoke from a plane. It was only there for a few seconds and had just picked up dust from the building site.”

Cheryl Richardson spotted the strange phenomenon around lunchtime, and quickly captured it on video.Cheryl Richardson spotted the strange phenomenon around lunchtime, and quickly captured it on video.

Today’s incident comes after a similar sight was noticed in Abbey Fields yesterday.

Cheryl thought this was a mini tornado because of its spiralling effect.

However, experts at Weatherquest said it was not a tornado, and was more likely to be either a dust devil or funnel cloud.

Forecaster Jim Bacon said, “You can get dust devils, as they are called in East Anglia, because of intense heat. You get a swirl-up of wind current and it can pick up dust or debris.”

Is this a dust devil or funnel cloud in Tolgate, Colchester? Picture: CHERYL RICHARDSONIs this a dust devil or funnel cloud in Tolgate, Colchester? Picture: CHERYL RICHARDSON

He said another possibility was a funnel cloud, which is a cloud of water droplets extending downwards.

Weatherquest has not received any other reports of similar sights locally, but there was a report of a similar incident on the Sussex coast today.

Severe thunderstorm warning issued in East Anglia

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