Antique bomb forces evacuation of St Albans museum - UPDATED

Verulamium museum

Verulamium museum - Credit: Archant

Verulamium Museum was evacuated last Thursday following fears that an explosive device had been brought in to the building.

Police were called to the museum at around 11.50am and contacted the army’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) team.

The EOD team soon confirmed that the object posed no danger and at around 12.30pm staff were told it was safe to return.

Kate Warren, manager of St Albans Museums, said: “Last week a member of the public brought in a selection of objects to Verulamium Museum for identification, including what was thought to be a cannonball.

“On closer inspection by museum staff, the item was identified as an antique bomb.

“We evacuated the building as a precaution before the item was removed by the bomb disposal unit.”

In 2002, metal detectorists brought in silver brooches and other items found at Turnershall Farm at a location later identified as the burial site for two Romanised Britons from the 2nd century AD.

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More recently, a metal detectorist contacted the finds liaison officer about a spectacular hoard of Roman gold coins that were found in the Parish of Sandridge.

Kate added: “If a resident finds a coin, pot or any other object of interest in a cupboard or while out metal detecting and wants to know more about it they can bring the item into the museum for a free identification.

“If, however, you think that the item may be an explosive then do not touch it, move it or use a mobile phone, metal detector or other electronic device near the object,” she warned.