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UPDATED: Police have sealed off a beach in Ryde tonight (Wednesday) following the discovery of a potentially explosive device.

Hampshire Constabulary were called to the scene at the entrance to North Walk shortly before 18:00.

The beach and surrounding area have been secured awaiting the arrival of Bomb Disposal experts from Portsmouth.

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It is thought the object could be a piece of ordnance that has either been washed ashore or unearthed during nearby works.

UPDATE @ 20:45 – Bomb disposal experts have arrived at Ryde with a specialist vehicle often seen at incidents involving Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).

Investigations are underway on the beach by experts wearing flash hoods and other protective clothing.

It’s thought an X-Ray or photograph has been taken of the unknown object to help identify what it could be and whether it poses a risk to public safety. It has been processed in the dark room on board the vehicle.

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UPDATE @ 21:26 – Bomb disposal experts have now deemed the object – which has been removed from the scene – as safe.

Cordons have been lifted and emergency services are standing down.

UPDATE THURSDAY – Hampshire Constabulary has this morning confirmed that the incident is not being treated as terrorism-related.

A spokesperson has said:

“We were called at 3.49pm to following reports that a suspicious item was found near Ryde beach.

“A cordon was put in place while the MOD’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) team attended to make the item safe on the beach.

“The incident is not being treated as terrorism-related and no further safety risks to the public were identified.”

Sources say that nearby public toilets may have had a part to play in this incident, which would support Hampshire Constabulary’s statement saying the item was found ‘near’ Ryde Beach. However it remains unclear how the item came to be on the beach prior to the arrival of EOD specialists.

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