Belfast Telegraph

Friday 29 August 2014

Man bailed after homes evacuated

About 80 homes were evacuated when a suspicious device was found at a residential property in Somerset

A man arrested after about 80 homes were evacuated when a suspicious device was found at a residential property has been released on bail.

He was detained in Somerset on suspicion of committing offences under the Explosives Substances Act.

Police said some suspicious items were discovered by a resident in the shed of a property in Kenwood Close, Warmley, South Gloucestershire, on Saturday afternoon.

A 100 metre safety exclusion zone was set up as a precaution and around 80 homes were evacuated as a consequence. Residents stayed with local family and friends or went to the cafe at the nearby Asda supermarket.

The army's explosives ordnance disposal unit carried out a controlled explosion on one item in nearby Barrs Court Park.

Avon and Somerset Police said several other items have been taken away for further examination and said it was too early to say conclusively what they were or the danger they posed. Residents were allowed to return home after the cordon was lifted.

Detective Chief Inspector Carolyn Belafonte, who is leading the investigation, said: "I would like to stress that we are not treating this as terrorism.

"At this stage we do not believe the objects were made with the deliberate intention of causing harm to anyone or anything. However, these objects could have a posed a danger to the local community and I am pleased they have been found and made safe.

"Over the past 24 hours we have had good support from the local community and I would like to thank residents for their patience and understanding when they were evacuated for several hours.

"These decisions are never taken lightly but are necessary to make sure people are safe."

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