RAF Cranwell

Controlled explosion after WWI bomb found at RAF Cranwell

The explosive found on site at the Royal Air Force College Cranwell’s Airfield on Tuesday was a 100-year-old bomb, officials confirmed.

As previously reported, The Royal Air Force Bomb Disposal Team, 5131 Squadron based at RAF Wittering, were called to the scene immediately after contractors at the airfield made the discovery during routine works.

The device is believed to date from around 1916. As a precaution, personnel working in the vicinity were evacuated and a safety cordon was put in place.

Controlled demolition on RAFC Cranwell Airfield.

Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Technicians from 5131 Bomb Disposal Squadron identified the device as a WWI 16lb high explosive bomb and carried out a controlled demolition.

Deputy Commandant of RAF College Cranwell, Group Captain Gordon Bettington said: “On discovery of the WW1 ordnance by contractors working on our airfield this morning, we activated our contingency plans to deal with the incident.

“I am immensely proud of the response from all our personnel and 5131 (BD) Squadron, which enabled things to swiftly return to normal after the ordnance was made safe. We are now fascinated to learn more about the munition itself and the history of operations from the airfield.”

Warrant Officer Phil Hunt the Senior EOD Officer at 5131 (BD) Squadron added: “This was a WWI bomb and it took a few minutes to identify as it was a most unusual find. Nonetheless, it was a pleasure to be called to the spiritual home of the Royal Air Force in its 100th year and to restore the Station to normal as quickly as we could.”