Team explode bomb in Sidmouth field

PUBLISHED: 15:22 07 June 2009 | UPDATED: 09:20 18 June 2010

The bomb

The bomb

A BOMB disposal team carried out a controlled explosion in Sidmouth this week. Police and explosive experts cordoned off a field near Trow Hill on Wednesday after a farmer reported finding a hand grenade. The bomb was identified as a Second World War Mill

A BOMB disposal team carried out a controlled explosion in Sidmouth this week.

Police and explosive experts cordoned off a field near Trow Hill on Wednesday after a farmer reported finding a hand grenade.

The bomb was identified as a Second World War Mills anti-personnel device and Explosive Ordnance Disposal carried out the controlled explosion at around 3pm.

George Davey, 46, who farms the land, found the hand grenade in an isolated area of woodland and believes it is the same bomb which he discovered in his childhood.

Mr Davey, of East Lodge, Harcombe, said: "I remember playing in the woods and I came across it. By the time the rest of the family arrived we couldn't find it again."

And by pure coincidence thirty year later, Mr Davey, who "completely forgot about" the bomb, unearthed it once more.

He added: "For safety reasons I decided to ring the police. The land is used for trial bikes and I thought it ought to be removed in case it was still live."

The field turned into a hive of activity as police officers were drafted in and the EOD team arrived on the scene.

Mr Davey said: "It's not something that happens every day on our farm! I think I met most of the Devon and Cornwall Constabulary."

The bemused farmer was even allowed to blow up the bomb after the disposal team burrowed it into the ground.

"I was very privileged," he added.

PC Jenny Palmer, who was first on the scene said: "We got the call at around 11am. I went to have a look and it was obviously the real McCoy so I asked the station to ring bomb disposal.

"We couldn't see the explosion as we were so far away but it was a very loud bang."

Mr Davey's family have been farming the land since 1953 and he believes prior to this it was used by the Home Guard or the army.

He added: "I've begun to wonder if there are any more up there!

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