Don’t panic, Captain Mainwaring…

There was a touch of drama in Highbridge this week when contractors found a “bomb sign” whilst digging in a void property garden close to the Asda supermarket.  

Homes in Sedgemoor contractors MD called the police, officers set up a “safe area” and a bomb disposal unit was called in from Salisbury to deal with the find.  

As the local rumour mill exploded in speculation, examination and investigation of the scene revealed it was just a sign that the Home Guard used to give advice in WW2 on how to handle “AW Bombs” safely. These were self-igniting phosphorous grenades with the ingredients – phosphorous, petrol and rubber – in a glass bottle. The sign would have originally been the lid of a case of these firebombs. Thousands were made and distributed to the Home Guard, but tests revealed they would have been ineffective against armoured vehicles.

The bombs are frequently found during demolition work and are still dangerous, so care is always taken if evidence of them is discovered.