Homes, cars and roads were blanketed in a thick layer of sand after a village was struck by a sand storm.
The phenomenon usually associated with arid, sun-blasted regions hit the wet and windy seaside community of Walcott in Norfolk.
Winds gusting at up to 70mph carried particles from the beach which was covered in 1.8 million cubic metres of sand last year to stop coastal erosion.
Residents woke on Saturday to find themselves looking out at sand dunes.
Jay Durrant said he ‘couldn’t believe it’ when he looked out of his window, adding that it will take up to a week to clear up the mess.
Caroline Stubbs said she had ‘never seen anything like it’ in 16 years as landlady of the Poacher’s Pocket pub.
She added: ‘We have spent the morning digging ourselves a path out of the pub so customers can get in.
‘It has come through every nook and cranny of the building. I had to get a locksmith to come out as I couldn’t get my key into the door because of a build-up of sand.’
But Walcott Parish Council chairman Pauline Porter said the sand was ‘far superior than water and flooding’.
She said: ‘It’s not nice but it is far better than sofas floating in a field.’
It came as the Met Office warned of heavy rain and gales this week – and the chance of the first named storm of the season.
Nearly an inch of rain could fall in England and Wales on Wednesday, while the weather system due to arrive on Friday could bring gales of up to 60mph and may be named Storm Aiden, depending on its severity.