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Thousands evacuated in Exeter as work continues on Second World War bomb

Robert Dex
·2-min read
<p>A police cordon</p> (Getty Images)

A police cordon

(Getty Images)

Thousands of residents in Exeter have been evacuated from their homes as authorities attend to a possible unexploded Second World War device, police said.

Devon and Cornwall Police confirmed a 400-metre cordon was in place, with 2,600 properties evacuated for the examination of the device, which was found on Glenthorne Road on Friday morning.

The device was found on a building site on private land to the west of the University of Exeter campus.

An initial 100-metre cordon was put in place, with evacuations taking place on Friday evening and Saturday morning.

The evacuations were at the request of the Royal Navy bomb disposal team, who worked through the night to establish a walled mitigation structure.

A police spokesman said: “The examination and detonation of the device has been passed to the Army.

“Examination of the device is due to commence at 10am and could take several hours.”

It is hoped the work will be completed by the end of Saturday.

Road closures have been put in place between Cowley Bridge and Exe Bridges, with diversions in place and motorists advised to avoid the area.

The force spokesman added: “Residents should be reassured that military, police and partners are working to maintain public safety.

“Exemptions in Covid-19 social distancing rules exist for matters of public safety such as this.”

The university said in a statement on Twitter affected students were “temporarily relocated to hotels in the city”.

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