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Norwich bar owner finds unexploded bomb in his garden

PUBLISHED: 06:00 12 April 2020

David Moore with the bomb disposal unit at The Street, in Taverham. PHOTO: David Moore

David Moore with the bomb disposal unit at The Street, in Taverham. PHOTO: David Moore

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At 10.30am on Good Friday, a Taverham family should have been opening a revolutionary new bar in the heart of Norwich.

David Moore unearthed an unexploded World War II mortar bomb in his front garden on Good Friday. PHOTO: David MooreDavid Moore unearthed an unexploded World War II mortar bomb in his front garden on Good Friday. PHOTO: David Moore

At 10.30am on Good Friday, a Taverham family should have been opening a revolutionary new bar in the heart of Norwich.

But with coronavirus putting a stop to the grand opening of Boom: Battle Bar, in Castle Quarter, David Moore turned to gardening to pass his time in lockdown.

Instead, the father-of-two almost experienced a very different blast, unearthing an unexploded Second World War mortar bomb in the front garden of the home where he has raised his family for the last 15 years.

Mr Moore, of The Street, said: “I was doing some weeding and digging the soil when my garden fork made contact with something underground.

A bomb disposal unit was called to The Street, in Taverham. PHOTO: David MooreA bomb disposal unit was called to The Street, in Taverham. PHOTO: David Moore

“It was caked in mud and I had no idea what it was. I was quite laid back because it just looked like an interesting historical object, but as it began to reveal itself when I started scrubbing it down, I got a bit more respect for it.

“I phoned the police who asked for a photo, and within a few minutes there was an officer on my driveway and the bomb disposal team on their way from Colchester.”

Mr Moore, who lives with his wife Emma, their two daughters and their daughters’ boyfriends, said the family had been stunned by the discovery.

He said: “It turned a boring lockdown day into quite an exciting one. We were all just astonished when we found out what it was. It was definitely a really weird day.”

A bomb disposal unit was called to The Street, in Taverham. PHOTO: David MooreA bomb disposal unit was called to The Street, in Taverham. PHOTO: David Moore

Mr Moore said: “It wasn’t until afterwards that we realised I probably hit the bomb with my fork almost to the minute that we should’ve been opening our doors to the public.”

Boom: Battle Bar, described as a “competitive, socialising venue”, is set to bring a number of activities to Norwich for the first time. Surrounding the bar, activities include axe throwing, interactive darts, “crazier” golf, shuffleboard, boules, billiards and pinball, among other activities, and is set to create around 40 jobs.

Work on the bar began in January, with the launch planned for Good Friday before the coronavirus lockdown.

Mrs Moore said: “We’ve definitely had many mixed emotions in the last few months. We’re so excited to open the venue but safety comes first. The site is pretty much ready so we’re eagerly waiting to show everyone.”

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