The discovery of a live wartime artillery shell on Brean beach caused part of the village to be sealed off by police on Monday – and this was the moment that the device was detonated by army bomb disposal experts.
Beach angler Barish Odemis told Burnham-On-Sea.com how his fishing line had come across the live device.
“I’d been fishing from the beach when my line got tangled up on what I thought was just a rock initially,” he said.
“I tried to pull it free, then noticed that in fact it was metal.”
“I quickly realised that it looked like an old wartime artillery shell so I took it up the beach to a safe place, away from other people, before I called the police and Coastguard.”
Barish, pictured right, then sent several photos of the object to the police for them to assess whether it was a danger to others.
“They agreed that it was suspicious and an army bomb disposal team was called to deal with it,” he added.
Police sealed off a large area around Brean Village Hall and even evacuated several homes as a safety precaution.
Two soldiers from the Royal Logistics Cops Bomb Disposal team arrived soon after and took the device down the beach where it was buried in sand and then safely detonated by remote control.
Eyewitnesses said a brief flash of flame was seen as the device exploded with a loud popping sound as smoke rose into the air.
Part of Warren Road in the village was closed to traffic, with motorists being diverted away from the area as a precaution for several hours as police dealt with the incident.
Police and other emergency services were at the scene for several hours before the explosive was safely detonated.
It’s not the first such incident to have occurred in recent years – several wartime ordnance devices have been safely removed after being found in the mud and sand at nearby Burnham and Brean.
Pictured: The scenes in Brean on Monday afternoon during the incident – photos: Burnham-On-Sea.com & Chris Bull