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Friday, 20 September, 2002, 11:47 GMT 12:47 UK
WWII bomb exploded at sea
Bomb explodes in the Solent
The 500lb WW II bomb was exploded in the Solent
A World War II bomb, discovered at Portsmouth Naval Base, has been detonated by bomb disposal experts.

The unexploded 500lb bomb was discovered on Thursday and resulted in more than 400 people having to evacuate their homes.

It also caused chaos to rush hour traffic as police closed roads in the city while the bomb was towed out to sea.

The device was destroyed in a controlled explosion in the Solent at about 1100 BST.

Transport chaos

Rail and ferry services that had been cancelled have now returned to normal.

The German device was unearthed by workmen using a mechanical digger at 1630 BST on Thursday at the heart of Portsmouth Naval Base.

A total of 500 Navy personnel, mainly senior and junior ratings living on the site, were also moved overnight, said a Royal Navy spokesman.

The civilians were rehoused at the city's Mountbatten Centre and at the city's cathedral buildings.

Trains cancelled

They have now been allowed to return to their homes.

Motorists travelling into Portsmouth before 0900 BST were hit by major delays due to road closures.

Trains to Portsmouth Harbour station were also disrupted.

All ferries to the Isle of Wight and Gosport and cross-channel services to France and Spain were also cancelled.


Click here to go to Southampton
See also:

18 Sep 02 | England
06 Jun 02 | Wales
14 Mar 02 | England
08 Jan 02 | England
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