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Picture: 'Hazardous objects and explosives' signs put up on Essex beach

Signs have been put up on the beach. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Warning signs have been put up on Dovercourt beach near Harwich to warn members of the public about unexploded hand grenades.

A decision on whether a section of the beach will be closed is due to be taken this afternoon.

Essex: Council seeks advice on whether to close beach after grenade discovery

One of the washed up grenades. Credit: Essex Police

Signs are being put up on a beach in Essex warning about the danger of unexploded hand grenades.

Five of the second world war devices have been washed up at Dovercourt near Harwich.

Recently, a device was found on the shoreline at Marine Parade when an off-duty military explosives expert saw a person throwing a grenade around for a dog to chase.

It's prompted the council to seek expert advice on whether it needs to close the area off.


Police warning after fifth grenade found on beach

The grenade found at Harwich

Police have urged people to be on their guard when visiting a beach in Harwich after a fifth wartime hand grenade was washed up within five weeks.

The latest device was found today, Sunday August 17, on the shoreline at Marine Parade when an off-duty military explosives expert saw a person throwing it around for a dog to chase.

The explosives officer organised a 30-yard cordon around the grenade and called police and Coastguard officers. The device was later taken away by Explosive Ordnance Disposal officers.

A similar grenade was found yesterday, on the beach near West End Lane and The Promenade and three were found near Lower Marine Parade on Saturday July 12. All four were disposed of by EOD officers who carried out controlled explosions on the beach.

Inspector Paul Butcher said: "It would appear that the grenades might have been in a crate that ended up in the sea during the Second World War. That crate might be breaking up or has been disturbed by dredging in the port and has resulted in these five devices being washed ashore along the same stretch of beach.

"We are asking people to be vigilant if visiting this beach and to dial 999 if they find any of these devices. Some of them have been covered in barnacles but the one yesterday looked almost as new despite being in the sea, possibly for many years.

"Anyone who finds a grenade should not touch it or move it but should call police immediately.”

Warning: Cat anti-freeze poisoning suspected in Essex

Police are investigating the possibility that three cats who were put to sleep in Harwich were poisoned with anti-freeze.

Between 11pm on May 18 and 7.50pm on May 19 in the area of Empire Road, three cats are believed to have ingested something, possibly anti-freeze, causing them to fall ill.

Police are investigating and would ask pet owners to keep a close eye on their pets and take them to the vets immediately should they have any concerns over their health.

Officers are also working closely with the RSPCA.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Pc Kevin Ward at Harwich police station on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Historic Harwich ferry route to be axed later this year

The DFDS route will close later this year. Credit: PA

A historic ferry route between Harwich and Esbjerg in Denmark will close later this year due to rising costs and falling passenger numbers.

The DFDS route, which runs 2 or 3 times a week currently, will stop on 29 September.

It first started way back in 1875.

The route first started back in the 19th century. Credit: PA

DFDS say that passenger numbers have dropped from 300,000 to 80,000.

The company tried to slash costs by reducing the number of crew members and transforming the route into a combined freight and passenger service.

However, the level of investment required to meet new environmental standards coming into force next year proved to be too great.

"Unfortunately we haven't been able to reduce costs enough to enable the route to bear the very high additional costs of around £2m a year," said CEO Niels Smedegaard.

"This is what the new environmental law and the requirement to use low-sulphur oil will cost based on current oil prices from 1 January 2015.

"The route is of particular historical significance to DFDS so it's a very sad day for us all.

"Our regrets go to our many passengers who must now see the last passenger ferry route between the UK and Scandinavia close.

"It's also regrettable that up to 130 jobs on board and ashore will be affected by the closure, even though we are fortunate that we can offer jobs to everyone onboard on other routes."

Mums on the march over maternity closures

Baby on protest march in Clacton Credit: ITV Anglia

Mums and mums-to-be joined a march to protest at the temporary closure of maternity units in Clacton and Harwich. The hospital trust in Colchester says the closure is to cope with a shortage of midwives.

The trust's decision to close Clacton and Harwich units will be reviewed in mid June.

Mums on the march in Clacton Credit: ITV Anglia
Protestors march over closure of maternity units Credit: ITV Anglia


Fight for maternity units continues

Campaigners hoping to save the maternity units at Clacton and Harwich are organising a protest march.

Clacton Hospital Credit: ITV Anglia

They were closed last month on a temporary basis with services being transferred to Colchester Hospital.

Protestors will march through Clacton on Saturday. They're hoping it will show the strength of feeling in the community against the closure.

Pressure to re-open two Essex birth units

There's growing pressure on health chiefs in Essex to reverse their decision to temporarily close maternity units at two hospitals.

The units at Harwich and Clacton were shut on 17 March because of a shortage of midwives.

The Board of Directors of Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust will review the decision in June.

Women booked to give birth at the maternity units at the community hospitals will be offered a choice of a home birth or delivery at Colchester General Hospital.

The MP for Clacton Douglas Carswell says a lot of people are angry about the decision.

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