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MoD Police dealing with Dorset beach 'bomb' men

By Emcfarnon  |  Posted: May 16, 2013

Worbarrow Bay is part of the 7,000-acre Lulworth Military Range, which is used by the Army for tank firing practice

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Two men spotted carrying what appeared to be unexploded bombs washed up on Worbarrow Bay are being dealt with by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) Police.

The men were photographed walking along the beach each carrying a 120-millimetre tank shell on May 6.

The MoD launched an appeal urging the men to contact them as a matter of urgency, warning the shells could contain potentially deadly explosives.

Today the MoD confirmed the men had been identified and the munitions recovered. A spokesperson said: "It has been confirmed by the Explosives Ordnance Disposal team that these are inert practice rounds fired by Chieftain Tanks.

"Because the paint which indicates both role and hazards had been worn off the ammunition, technicians had to x-ray them to confirm this".

The spokesperson stressed members of the public should not touch or pick up any military debris at the Bay, as there is no way of knowing whether ammunition is live or inert.

"They could just as easily have been live rounds," the spokesperson said.

The shells are being held by the Explosives Ordnance Disposal team at Tidworth and MoD police enquiries are continuing. The men have been spoken to by the MoD Police, who are dealing with the matter.

Worbarrow Bay is part of the 7,000-acre Lulworth Military Range, which is used by the Army for tank firing practice. The Lulworth Range Walks and Tyneham Village are open to the public most weekends.

A woman who took the photo of the men on her mobile phone branded the pair "idiots".

The MoD spokesperson said: "The MoD takes the safety of the public extremely seriously and all pathways at Lulworth Ranges that are open to the public are cleared of military debris, including shells, before access is permitted.

"A number of signs have been placed on-site warning members of the public of the dangers of venturing from authorised pathways and removing shells. Unfortunately there are instances where these warnings are ignored.

"These shells have swiftly been recovered and we would like to urge the public using the ranges to keep to the designated pathways and remember that it is potentially extremely dangerous to touch any military material they may find".

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