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Controlled explosion in Addingham after WWII mortar found *video

The army carried out a controlled explosion in Addingham on Wednesday after a member of the public discovered what is thought to be a WWII mortar.

Police officers from Ilkley attended the incident at Bark Lane after being notified at 2pm and put a 50m cordon in place whilst waiting for the Army's Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit.

The Ilkley Gazette reported a spokesperson for West Yorkshire Police said: "At about 2pm on Wednesday 1st April 2020, West Yorkshire Police received a report from a member of the public who had come across what he thought was a World War 2 mortar shell in a field near Bark Lane.

"Officers contacted the Army’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit, who turned out to the scene and carried out a controlled detonation.

"There was no risk to the public and due to the location, the incident had no impact on the local community."

Laura Jane Muscroft told Ilkley Chat: “The police and bomb disposal team asked if they could detonate the bomb in our field.’ Laura has shared the video of the detonation.

The device carried all the markings and resemblance of a WWII mortar, the West Yorkshire Police spokesperson added.

The mortar was found just near Addingham Suspension Bridge by Addingham resident Mary Jenner who was doing a litter walk for the local community for her daily exercise.

Mary immediately phoned her partner Jason Gates to say she thought she had found a bomb.

Jason, of Main Street, Addingham, said: "Mary was concerned when she found it. I immediately phoned her to say you need to step away from that. Frightened and intrigued we were.

"I travelled over and compared it to photos. We didn’t hesitate to phone the police due to it being a dangerous device.

"The police arrived and made the call to communicate with the right authorities to handle the case in the safest and best way."

Bark Lane resident Philip Robins who took photographs of the incident said: "My wife and I went for a ‘lockdown walk’ about mid afternoon on Wednesday and noticed two police vans parked opposite our house, where the Dales Way footpath descends towards the river and the suspension bridge. A policeman was stationed on the other side of the river at the northern end of the suspension bridge.

"About an hour later we returned from our walk and found the police vans still there and after a few moments a RLC Bomb Disposal lorry arrived on the scene.

"I did not talk to the policemen or the three soldiers attending the incident but from what I overheard I think an item of WWII ordinance (possibly a mortar shell) had been found near the river somewhere upstream towards High Mill."

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