Bomb scare at school sees children and teachers shelter take shelter

A primary school in Plymouth, Devon, was at the centre of a bomb scare on Wednesday afternoon (June 8), after a suspected World War Two mortar was found by workmen on the grounds.

Devon and Cornwall police set up a 100m cordon around St Matthew’s School, with pupils and teachers told to stay inside the building while they waited for a Royal Navy bomb disposal team to arrive and inspect the device.

In order to distract them from the kerfuffle outside, teachers put on a video for the kids to watch, with Paddington 2 the film of choice.

The bomb was eventually able to be moved safely away from the school, with a controlled explosion set for later in the day, Plymouth Live reports.

Police revealed that the mortar was found by a digger during building work within the school grounds, around 2.30pm, before it was removed just before 5.30pm.

Headteacher Chris Conners praised the pupils for remaining calm in what could have been a worrying few hours for them and their parents.

He said: “We had information from police early on, they told us what they wanted us to do with the children.

“They were sensible, the children were fantastic. Everyone is safe and I think the roads around have not helped, but the parents were great and staff as well.”

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A message from the school to parents had initially said: “All your children are safe. A suspicious device has been unearthed near the school.

“Police have closed the car park. A disposal unit has been called as soon as we know what is happening, we will let you know. Thanks as always for your patience.”

One parent of a child at the school, said: “The school has been good and given us updates.

“It was a bit scary when you hear it and have children in school, but they have been good, acted swiftly, and told us not to worry and children were safe.”

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