Hailstones "the size of golf balls" battered parts of Essex during a summer storm yesterday (Tuesday, July 20).

In 27C heat, Thaxted, Bardfield and Great Sampford residents experienced a hailstorm which damaged cars and destroyed gardens.


One resident from Thaxted even shared a photograph of a hailstone measuring three centimetres in diameter on Twitter.

Neil Brooks tweeted: "Two to three minutes of the biggest hail I've ever seen. Dents in the car.

"Insane weather."

%image(15125579, type="article-full", alt="Neil Brooks from Thaxted photographed a hailstone measuring three centimetres in diameter")

%image(15125580, type="article-full", alt="Hailstones "the size of golf balls" in Thaxted")

Jane from Great Sampford said: "It's so depressing to see the garden this morning, or what is left of it.

"A major clear-up begins today."

%image(15125581, type="article-full", alt="A Great Sampford garden after the storm")

%image(15125582, type="article-full", alt="Hailstones in a Great Sampford garden after the storm")

The large hailstones are the latest in a series of amber-warning weather events.

Thaxted flooded last week, causing disruption to commuters between Saffron Walden and Dunmow.

A weather station near Saffron Walden recorded 60.3mm of rain yesterday, more than the average July rainfall for much of East Anglia (51.6mm).

The heatwave - which has seen highs of 32C in some parts of the country - is set to tail off over the weekend, with highs of 23C on Friday and Saturday in Essex.

The Met Office forecasts storms on Sunday with highs of 21C.