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Huge explosions in Sandwich as unexploded shells detonated

Several huge thumps heard by residents in parts of Kent were unexploded army shells being detonated.

The army bomb disposal team was called to Sandwich Bay after a total of 11 wartime munitions were found in the sand.

A number of wartime shells were found in Sandwich Bay yesterday. Photo: Glenn Evans
A number of wartime shells were found in Sandwich Bay yesterday. Photo: Glenn Evans

The finds, made by metal detectorists Glenn Evans and Rob Bergin yesterday, consisted mostly of anti-aircraft shells, with one Armstrong practice round.

Of these, four were detonated in separate controlled explosions by the Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) squad.

Residents in both Sandwich and Thanet reported hearing massive "thumps" or "thuds" between around 4pm and 5.30pm as the devices were blown up.

Controlled explosions are commonplace when unexploded bombs or shells are found that still pose a risk to the public.

The EOD team is often called out several times a year when wartime devices are uncovered across the county.

The finds were made by Rob Bergin (pictured) and Glenn Evans. Photo: Glenn Evans
The finds were made by Rob Bergin (pictured) and Glenn Evans. Photo: Glenn Evans

The most recent callout was May 22, after the team were called to a device in Maidstone that eventually turned out to be safe.

Earlier that month, the team had been in King's Hill to detonate an unexploded wartime bomb.

The German armament was discovered on a building site at Warwick Way, and a protective cage was erected before the device was detonated.

A police spokesperson said: "Police were made aware by the Coastguard, shortly after 2pm that a number of suspected wartime munitions had been found on the beach in Sandwich Bay.

"Officers attended to assist explosive ordnance disposal experts from the Ministry of Defence, who safely disposed of the items."

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