BUILDERS got a timely reminder of the devastating consequences of war – after finding a ‘firebomb’ while doing a loft conversion.
The device had lain in three parts buried into the timbers of the terraced house in Essex Road, Southsea for more than 70 years.
Coincidentally, the discovery was made just moments before 11am on Armistice Day.
Carpenter Matt Pinhorne, 37, who works for Copnor Loft Conversions, said: ‘We were aware of a couple of bits of timber showing signs of being burnt.
‘I thought it could have been an electrical fault, but one of the lads said it could have been a World War Two bomb.
‘We didn’t really think it could be, but the next day we lifted up the insulation and there was the tail part to this bomb. What was spooky, was that it just before 11am on Armistice Day.’
The builders later found another two parts, which they believe to be a German Second World War bomb, used in firebombing.
Luckily for whoever lived in the house and street at the time, the fire did not spread and left only damaged timbers in the roof.
Current homeowner Andrea Wingfield, who moved in with her husband Phil in 2008, was amazed when the workers showed her their discovery.
The 42-year-old said: ‘It had caught fire but for some reason it didn’t spread. There was a bit of burning so it had burnt for a period of time.
‘It had caused damage, but what it could’ve done is unbelievable.’
Andrea’s son Toby, six, has been inspired by the finding and has taken it in to show his school.
He said: ‘It was exciting. It’s exciting looking at it and all my friends liked to see it.’
Matt said: ‘He was interested in it because it’s a real piece of history.’
Matt, from Baffins, said it was the most unusual discovery in his 15-year loft conversion career.
He added: ‘We’ve found a couple of bullets before, and pieces of junk, but nothing quite like this before.’
Andrea has since taken the pieces to Fort Nelson and had an expert look at them, who said it was most likely from 1941 or 1942.
She hopes to get the pieces logged with the D-Day Museum in Southsea.