UPDATE: All-clear for West Runton’s Links Country Park Hotel after bomb squad remove mortar

Bomb disposal experts safely removed an unexploded wartime device from the golf course of a north Norfolk hotel this morning after an all-night police vigil at the site.

A Colchester-based bomb squad arrived at first light to examine the live bomb, discovered by a workman yesterday afternoon at West Runton's Links Country Park Hotel.

Experts X-rayed it twice before identifying it as a two-inch second world war mortar, according to Marc Mackenzie, director of Links owners Mackenzie Hotels.

They then took the bomb back to Colchester where Mr Mackenzie understood it would be destroyed by a civilian contractor.

Hotel staff had kept police supplied with hot tea through the night as they kept guard around the mortar site, said Mr Mackenzie.

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The wine bottle-shaped bomb was unearthed at around 3pm yesterday by a builder working on the nine-hole course at the Links Country Park Hotel.

Darren Cooper, 38, from Trimingham, was cutting a trench to lay pipe for a new irrigation system, which would serve the course, when he scooped up the corroded device in the bucket of his mini digger.

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He said: 'As I emptied the bucket out it ended up on the side of the trench. I stopped and thought what's that?

'I realised what it was by looking at it and realised it hadn't detonated, it was still live. I was a bit gob smacked and a bit shocked and got out the way pretty sharpish. Then just rung it in.'

Mr Mackenzie said the course was open again as usual this morning after the squad left.

The irrigation work is the last part of a �1m nine-month refurbishment of the hotel which Mackenzie Hotels bought from the receivers last April.

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