UPDATE: Hilsea estate sealed off as historic ordnance is found

BOMB disposal officers were called to an industrial estate in Hilsea after an historic piece of ordnance was found.

Police cordoned off part of Ackworth Road after the device was discovered in one of the yards shortly after 1pm.

Concerned yard employees had called upon the emergency services after a worker unearthed the ‘rusty’ metal item, which was initially suspected to be an old bomb.

Explosive experts from the Royal Navy’s Southern Diving Unit 2, based at Horsea Island, were scrambled.

The sailors are specially trained in disposing of explosives, both on land and at sea.

Upon arrival, the device was found to be an inert warhead fired from an old artillery shell.

Lieutenant Commander Jonny Campbell, commanding officer of the bomb disposal team, said: ‘We were called to respond to the scene of a potential bomb or projectile.

‘We attended, identified what it was and we were happy it was safe for us to remove it from the scene and let these guys carry on with their work.’

Speaking of what the device was, he added: ‘This has been fired between the 1960s and 1970s.

‘It was fired from a live gun over a long distance, probably a 15 or 20-kilometre range weapon. The warhead itself is made of concrete so it is inert.

‘If it lands heavily it could have hurt someone but the state it was in we were happy to move it.’

The road was re-opened shortly after 3pm.

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