West Cumbrian residents have spoken of their shock after thunder and lightning swept through the region on Monday night, the likes of which many have never seen before.

As the storms covered much of the UK, reports came in of lightning strikes across the county, including a house in Moss Bay Road, Workington, and a house at Wreay, near Carlisle.

A fire spokesman said there was smoke and damage to the bathroom, and the utilities were isolated.

A Moss Bay Road resident said: “There was an enormous bang, probably at around 10.30pm to 11pm. We had two or three of them. It was absolutely blinding.”

He was not at all surprised to hear there had been a report of a house in the road being struck by a bolt. He said: “It was my first thought that it had hit a house. There were car alarms going off too. You could actually feel the noise.”

He said he watched the storm move across the sky from Moss Bay Road towards Workington and added that he had never seen thunder and lightning as bad in Cumbria in the 16 years he had lived here.

A Cranbourne Street resident, which is directly behind Moss Bay Road, said he felt his house shake.

Shoppers at Moss Bay’s Asda were shocked at how loud the thunder was and how bright the lightning. One woman said: “Everybody heard it. I’ve never seen anything like it, it was like a bomb going off.”

At about 1am yesterday fire crews Carlisle East and West were mobilised to reports of a building fire near Port Road Industrial Estate where they found a smell of burning and light smoke in the area. They put this down to a lightning strike, but no damage was caused.

Samantha Loukes, incident manager at Electricity North West, said: “Monday night’s conditions were remarkable.

“We were well prepared as our teams constantly have a watching brief of the weather forecast and I’m delighted with the response from our teams who take great pride in serving our customers throughout the region.

“Across the night, we had more than 40,000 customers without power and our preparations meant we were able to restore more than 38,000 within three minutes and engineers are working to restore power to the final few customers.

“A further weather warning has been sent out by the Met Office and we’re continuing to prepare by drafting in further resources to help deal with any faults that may occur on the network.”

“If anyone needs any more information during a power cut, they can follow Electricity North West on Twitter or Facebook for updates, or call us free on 105.”