Ilford hand grenade was ‘genuine’ device

A major securty alert was sparked in Ilford today afer an unexploded hand grenade was discovered by a PCSO on the beat.

The discovery of the device at 11am today, in Roden Street, sparked an immediate response by police who set up a 100m cordon and called in the bomb squad.

Officers closed surrounding roads, evacuating the Purplemakers Arms and warning office workers in nearby Beckett House to stay away from the windows.

Ch Insp Martin Allen said: “The specialist explosive officers were on the scene within a very short period of time and after examination the hand grenade was removed. It was believed to be a genuine, post war hand grenade which appeared to have had the fuse removed.”

He added: “The incident was dealt with quickly, with minimum disruption. All roads were reopened and people were able to return to their houses after only 40 minutes.”

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A police spokesman said that an investigation into the finding had begun, but there was “no evidence” to suggest any criminal intent.

The alert caused major delays to traffic in the town centre while diversions were in place, and the car park of Sainsburys was closed.

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