Plymouth Lord Mayor praises 'amazing' effort to remove WW2 bomb

PA Credit: The unexploded bomb was transported through the city on the back of an army truck.

Plymouth's Lord Mayor has praised those involved in the removal of an unexploded World War Two bomb from the city.

The 500kg German bomb found in a garden in St Michael Avenue, Keyham, in February, was transported through the city before being detonated at sea.

At a council meeting, Mark Shayer thanked city councillors for showing “amazing community leadership” during the effort to remove the device.

He also praised the efforts of the military personnel and thanked residents for their cooperation.

The discovery sparked one of the largest evacuations since the conflict, with 10,000 people moving from their properties over four days of disruption.

Thirty armed forces bomb disposal specialists were involved in the operation but many other organisations helped, including Dartmoor Rescue and the Red Cross, as well as volunteers and councillors.

The device was taken out to sea to be detonated. Credit: PA

Speaking at a Plymouth City Council meeting, Lord Mayor Mark Shayer (Con, Budshead) said: “Our thanks go to the officers of the council who worked around the clock with our partners to ensure a good outcome and our councillors who showed amazing community despite being impacted by the cordon.

“I would like to thank our military personnel whose bravery was clearly shown through spent time assessing the device and driving it through our city – a level of risk it is hard for many to understand."

He also praised the people of Keyham for their “forbearance and assistance they provided to each other”.

The council has also been helping in the aftermath of the military operation when some damage was caused to properties.

This has included installing temporary fencing in gardens, offering one household a two-day deep cleaning service, paying for their carpet and sofa to be cleaned, offering vouchers to replace broken items and for food, repairing gutting and cleaning out blocked drains, fixing windows and offering to arrange the repair of a broken boiler.

Council leader Tudor Evans (Lab, Ham) said whilst it was not the council’s role to pay for repairs to private properties following an emergency, Building Plymouth, a partnership led by the council made up of construction companies across the city, had offered its support at no cost to the residents or the council.

“This is another example of everyone coming together to show community spirit during an emergency,” he said. “When the chips are down, Plymouth has stepped up.”

Credit: LDRS / Alison Stephenson