Cornwall

WWII parachute mine found in Helford River is detonated

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Media captionThe mine was found in the Helford River. Underwater footage: Atlantic Scuba

A Royal Navy bomb disposal team have safely detonated a large World War II mine a mile off the coast of Falmouth.

The German device, 6ft (1.8m) by 3ft (91cm), which contained more than 700kg (1,540lb) of explosives, was towed out to sea from the Helford River.

About 50 boats were moored along a cordon a mile from the detonation site as people gathered to watch.

Bomb disposal officer, Sid Lawrence said the device was "very, very powerful and very big".

"Whilst it would have been easier to blow the mine up where it was, it was too close to land and there was a risk to people and buildings," he said.

If a bomb of its size were to be detonated on land Mr Lawrence said it would "certainly take out quite a few houses".

Found by local scuba diver, Mark Milburn, the mine is thought to be one of the biggest found in South West England.

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