Family recalls moment pet dog proudly shows off dug up object - a mortar bomb from under their West Runton camp site tent

Hattie the hero dog who discovered the unexploded mortar on a West Runton caravan park. Picture: Ric

Hattie the hero dog who discovered the unexploded mortar on a West Runton caravan park. Picture: Richard Eddy - Credit: Archant

Hattie the spaniel's inquisitive nose dug up a potentially explosive surprise for a family at a north Norfolk camp site.

Unexploded mortar discovered at a West Runton caravan park. Picture: Richard Eddy

Unexploded mortar discovered at a West Runton caravan park. Picture: Richard Eddy - Credit: Archant

For the young dog unearthed an old mortar bomb just inches below where they had been sleeping in their tent for days.

Sarah and Richard Eddy with Hattie and their children Isla and Freya Picture: Richard Eddy

Sarah and Richard Eddy with Hattie and their children Isla and Freya Picture: Richard Eddy - Credit: Archant

As reported earlier, an Army bomb squad was called to the Caravan and Camping Club site at West Runton.

Now the family involved has come forward to tell their story of how a camping trip to the tranquil coast ended in drama - after discovering they had been sleeping on top of a live bomb all week.

Richard and Sarah Eddy were enjoying a week at the site with their two children Isla, 10, and Freya eight, and Mrs Eddy's parents.


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As they packed up to go home, year-old Hattie started to sniff around underneath where their tent had been pitched - and proudly showed off in her mouth a small metal object scrapped up from just below the grass.

Civil servant Mr Eddy, 40, who had spent nine years in the armed forces, instantly recognised it to be the top of an old mortar bomb.

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He called warden who contacted the police and a bomb squad from Colchester arrived to take it away for a controlled explosion on June 1.

Mr Eddy said he had noticed a small dip in the ground when he arrived.

He added: 'Normally I fill in any holes or depressions in the ground when I set up the caravan, but on this occasion due to being delayed we arrived late and I didn't get around to doing this, maybe for the best.

'I presumed it to be another rabbit scrape as there are a large number of rabbits that come onto the campsite from the neighbouring land.

'I am just glad we or anybody else had not hit it with a tent peg over the many years the land has been used as a campsite.'

Wife Sarah, 39, said after the initial shock had worn off they realised how lucky they were, having been sleeping on top of the live mortar all week.

'Hattie found it because spaniels are retrievers and like to pick things up with their mouths.

'After Richard took it off her she was sitting there looking glum because we had taken this new toy away from her.'

She said: 'I think afterwards the reality set in and I thought, oh God could it have gone off?

'If we had banged our tent pegs into it who knows what could have happened.'

Has your pet found anything unusual? Email sabah.meddings@archant.co.uk

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