Lut evening Aehbarton was visited by a regular hurricane from the northwest, the storm being the severest that has been experienced for years. The wind blew pretty stiffly all tie afternoon, and increased considerably m violence about half.pact seven m the evening. A temporary lull then occurred, but just about nine the wind sprang up with all 1b.9 force of a hurricane and raged for two boars or more. Pcdet-trianism was anything but pleasant, owing to the duet and small shingle which filled the air, and at times, owing to the vlolenca with whioh the wind blew, walking m ihe teeth of tho gale was almost iajp< Bsibie. A considerable amount of damage appears to hare been done throughout the County, tree*, fence?, and ttbecU bping dpwn m many direo'ionfl. In the town of Afhbuiton the fcfftot* of 'ihe gale made thcraa^lvcß pret<y Beverely fait, any weak point* m the construction ft ft balding beiog roughly tasted . Ibe
| worst damage occasioned was at the j High School whero a brick waII was completely demolished. Three of the i walla of tho tfchnol, that fcr boys, > were of buck, the remaining wall, . that Rt tho Worth end. being oom--5 pofii;d of woo;l, with a view to, tho exr uvijtion of tbts building at some future » <Wti. Thlj w'.-oden wall was the one nooul 5 i-xpi bom to the vlo!n:;c-> of the wifcd, tho I brick end w?U which Buffered, being oom- : paratlvtly sheltered, but from the appaat- , Aimo ot tao rui:.a it locma 'bat wheis the : wind was at Ua height tho holloing mu*t , bave been vibrating vt-.ty strongly, till a( , laa, (ha brick end waa thrown almoii , oumplntely dowt, tho whole of tho g»blc , from its »pcx to tbe bottom of tho lurgo , wicdow, bouhu nix feet or so irom tie , ground, falling oatwards In h confuted [ jumblo of tricks, mortar and wMte free- , btone. That such damago should be , occasioned by the wind seems almost ' incredible, tbe gaping end of the ' ballding and the mass of debris lying , on the ground beneath appeatlng more. ' like tbe result of a big earthquake At the New Zealand L.i*n and Mercantile Agenoy Company's iron gialn atoro m West street the wiud got under the roofing, and m a short time sheets of galvanised iron were flying through the atr. Most of theae lodged on tbe railway reserve, a number being Intercepted by the fenoo of the young plantation lronting on Bast street. Nearly a dt zan sheets were, however, blow a clear o?or this obstruction by tbe foioe of tbe wind, and these found a lodgment against the fence surrounding the Courthouse. Fortunately no ono seems to have been m tho violntty at this tlmt> beoause a blow from one of these missiles would have been dangerous. At the Town Hall the ridging on the roof was blown off and deposited In the baok premises of the Somerset Hotel. The front doors of the Oddfellows' Hall were blown In and wrenched from their sookoti. The roof was tora off a cottage on the Alford Forest road and the ohimney blown down. A ohimney mMr Marry Stepheneon's house, Attken street, filled to prove stroDg enough to reilst the gale, aod went through tbe roof In its desoent. Several windows In shops, and many m private residences were blown m, and there will be plemy of work for carpenters glaziers and kindred tradesmen for a few days. Mr Paget's blacksmith's shop m Burnett Btreet was blown off tbe foundation. Tbe telegraph line suffered severely, Ohertsey being until late m the afternoon the utmost limit of communloatiou corthwards, wi.lio only occasionally oould signals ue obtained from Hlnde. There are ten telegraph posts down between Ashbarton and Überteey, and abont twenty, it Is said, between Ohertsey and Rakula ; bet*oen Ashbucton and Hinds there am a dozen posts down. Air Douglas, the Asnburton postmaster, t< ok prompt stops to restore oommunloatlou, and at daybreak this mot mug tbe lino man set out lo make what repairs ate neoeussry to unable communication to be carried on. At Tinwali a considerable amount of damngi was dono. Mr James Begg'e large blaokemlth'a shop nes completelydestroyed and all that now remains of it lo a heap of wreckage. When tho storm came on Mr Begg oudeavored to save the plaoe by ttrengtbenlog the walls with props, but all to no purpose, aa under the force of a violent gust, the building collapsed. Some windows In Mr Clark's store were blown m, and the roof was stripped off Mr Gudtell'a stable. A number of minor casualties are reported. We hear that tho Oathollo Churoh at GieihvHD, which was m the oosrso of ereotlon was completely demolished by tbe storm. The locs will be a heavy one to tho contractor, Mr J, L. Brown. Mr Uawdoa's grain shed et Weatorfield was blown down. In several portions of the oounty groat damage was occasioned to orops. In many oasei of late sown crops, where the young plant has not made sufficient root to hold, the soil, right down to the bottom of tbo plough has been blown clear away. Wo have heard of two farmers near Wiuohmore who aro heavy locers from this cause. At the racecourse tho framework at tbo top of tbe grandstand whs demolished, and tbe totahoator house shifted from Ito foundations. A oblmney m Mr T, Bullook's reiidenoo on Bmltboeli road wai blown down, and tbe building »t Hampstead, formerly used by Mr F. T. Mayo as a bone mill was laid low by the storm. Mr Tail's blaoksmlth shop at Wukauul also went down before the gale. The Mount Somers train, whloh left hare shortly before eight o'clock encountered the full violence of tbe gale. The extension of the Hue to Sprlngboro wsa opened yesterday, and though the tram should have arrived at Spriogbutn at 9.35 p.m. we hear tbat owing to the violence of the wind it was eleven o'olook before tbe journey was completed. A oouple of chlmnlcs lv one of the Methven hotels are down. The gale appears to have boon felt throughout the greater part of tbe province, and at Timara a geod deal of damago was done to buildings.
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