Bomb squad blows up suspect package
BOMB squad officers today carried out a controlled explosion after a suspicious package was found at an Ipswich house.Police immediately sealed off the area and the busy Foxhall Road was closed to traffic while people were evacuated from their homes and workplaces near the Golf Hotel.
By Georgina James
BOMB squad officers today carried out a controlled explosion after a suspicious package was found at an Ipswich house.
Police immediately sealed off the area and the busy Foxhall Road was closed to traffic while people were evacuated from their homes and workplaces near the Golf Hotel.
The alert was made by people in the house at 8.30am, after a package which is believed to have been delivered by post, was left outside.
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More than 50 people living and working nearby were evacuated from their homes and place of work as a precaution while bomb disposal experts carried out a controlled explosion.
Two members of the Royal Logistics Corps Bomb Disposal team arrived at the scene shortly after 10am to examine the package and they then prepared to carry out a controlled explosion.
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People who had been evacuated and other people living close by gathered in the street as two men from the army prepared for the controlled explosion.
A man from the Royal Logistics,wearing a protective suit and mask examined the package before a controlled explosion was carried out at 10.52am.
Danny Davis, a sales representative at Bennetts, a motorcycle parts shop on Foxhall Road, said: "The first I realised that something was wrong was when I followed a police car up the road at about 9am.
"No one is really sure what has happened but the report are that a suspicious package has been delivered to a house on the road.
"It has certainly stirred things up for a Monday morning."
Mark Reynolds, assistant manager at Bennetts said: "The first thing I knew about it was when police officers started putting up tape and cordoning off the area from our shop.
"Officers then started knocking on peoples doors and evacuating them. They asked them id we wanted to leave our premises but we felt we far enough away."
Paul Smith who lives in Heathland Park, a development behind the house where the package was left, was surprised that he was not asked to evacuate.
He said: "The police did not ask us to evacuate but I suppose they thought two gardens separated us from the potential risk, however, we are closer than many people who were asked to leave.
"I was outside when the explosion took place and it wasn't very loud and I doubt it would have scared the pigeons off my roof."
James Phillips, sales manager at PFK Ling Ltd, a motorcycle shop opposite where the package was discovered said: "At about 9.30am police came in to the shop and told us to close it because a suspect package had been found at the house opposite.
"We quickly pushed all the bikes inside and then left. We had about 12 members of staff in at the time.
"We watched the experts send a robot down the road and two men from the army were working in the road. Later we heard an explosion."
Traffic diversions were put in place by the police and part of Foxhall Road was closed. Police officers and traffic wardens were at the scene stopping people from entering the area.
At about 11.05 a spokeswoman for Suffolk police said: "The army has completed it work and now the area is being preserved so that CID and scene of crime officers can investigate the scene.
A spokeswoman for the MoD said that she could confirm that 621 squadron EOD from Colchester was called to Foxhall Road in Ipswich after a suspicious package was found at an address.
No further information was available on whether the package was dangerous.