A man in the UK was shocked to discover that the ‘milk bottles’ he found buried in his backyard were actually live grenades from the Second World War. James Osborne, from Bramdean, Hampshire, dug up two old crates after a landscape gardener working at his property found them buried in his backyard.
“Initially, we didn’t realise how significant it was. They looked like milk bottles so we were lifting them out and putting them on the side,” Mr Osborne told ITV News. However, he soon noticed that some of the ‘milk bottles’ were smoking.
The Hampshire homeowner had chanced upon more than 40 World War II grenades in his backyard.
“A couple of them were smoking so we thought it best to call the police and then we had the fire brigade, about 5 or 6 ambulances all preparing for a controlled explosion,” he said.
The 48 grenades were detonated in a controlled explosion by the bomb disposal unit after Mr Osborne contacted them. Winchester Police took to Twitter to warn neighbours not to be alarmed about the noise. “If you live or were travelling through the Bramdean area this evening around 7.40pm and heard a large explosion don’t be alarmed,” the police force wrote.
One Twitter user also shared an incredible clip of the explosion. Watch it below:
Was exciting pic.twitter.com/sy8tPVLKdd
— Jan Hall (@JanJanbilly) April 29, 2021
According to the Daily Mail, it is believed that the grenades were handed out by the Home Guard during the Second World War to defend against potential Nazi invasions.
“The idea is, if you were to throw them against a wall they would ignite and blow up, and because it had phosphorus in it, water would be useless. You can imagine the Home Guard throwing these at Nazi tanks coming down the road, you know Dad’s Army protecting the village,” said Mr Osborne.
“This used to be the rector’s house so it would have been one of the earliest buildings in the village and, because of who lived here, it could have been one of the main meeting spots of the local Home Guard.”
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