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Police have cordoned off a section of a holiday park in Bembridge and are evacuating guests tonight following the discovery of what is thought to be an unexploded bomb.

A cordon has been established at Whitecliff Bay Holiday Park after authorities were alerted to a potential unexploded object sometime around 23:30 (Thursday).

Island Echo is told that a guest staying at the park found an object on the beach and carried it back to their caravan before it was realised what exactly they had found. They are said to have initially believed it to be a fossil.

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The suspected ordnance was originally being described as a grenade by officials, but guests tell Island Echo that it is now being referred to as a bomb.

The Royal Navy Bomb Disposal Team from the mainland have been tasked to the scene and are expected to arrive at Bembridge at around 04:30.

In the meantime, guests nearest to the potentially deadly object have been evacuated from their caravans and are being cared for at the on-site The Nab clubhouse.

The area remains on lockdown.

UPDATE @ 06:45 – It has been confirmed that an old hand grenade was discovered at Whitecliff Bay Holiday Park, prompting Bomb Disposal experts to be called to the scene. They arrived shortly before 05:00.

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A controlled explosion was carried out on the beach at first light and the area has now been declared safe for guests to return to their caravans.

A spokesperson for Away Resorts has said:

“The hand grenade has been retrieved by the Royal Navy Bomb Disposal team.

“Thank you for your patience, we are all very grateful.

“If you are staying with us at the moment it is now safe to return to your accommodation.

“The park will continue today, business as usual.”

A spokesperson for Hampshire Constabulary has confirmed that Police were called at 22:36 and that the holiday park was evacuated after a member of the public found a grenade on the beach.

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