Hail batters town

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Ashburton has been lashed by a wild hailstorm similar to the one that damaged thousands of cars several years ago.

The storm sent pedestrians fleeing and forced drivers to pull over.

Some hailstones were the size of golf balls and hit parked and moving cars – and roofs – with a metallic thud.

The storm arrived at 3pm but the worst of the hail had gone by 3.15pm.