Family homes have been damaged after a WW2 bomb was detonated with pictures showing doors knocked off their hinges and windows blown out.
A resident of a house in Exeter, who wished to remain anonymous, said the explosion – despite being controlled – still did some damage to the house.
The bomb was detonated at a site right next to the home.
Doors had been knocked off their hinges, mud thrown all over decking, door frames badly damaged, and windows blown out by the vacuum such an explosion creates, reports Devon Live.
The resident said: “I was expecting more, it is superficial.
“We weren’t the worst hit, the others right next to the area suffered the most.
“But, still, it’s not nice to come home and see your house broken like this.”
The resident said his family had “quite the saga” across the last few days – and that it isn’t over yet.
After being told the family would hear about alternative accommodation, he spent the last two nights sleeping in his car.
“By 5pm on Friday evening, we didn’t hear from anyone so we went to go back (home), we thought it would just be for the day.”
At this point, the 100m cordon zone had been set up – and the family were challenged on their way in.
They were allowed to pick up the essentials, and the resident asked officers when they would know when to return.
“Spent the night in the car, thought ‘to hell with that’, and Saturday morning tried to go back again.”
His family were, again, told they were not allowed in – and after ringing the council was told they had set up some hotels.
However, the resident said he was unsure how Covid-safe they would be – especially given the crowds of people all heading to them.
“I realise this is an emergency, but surely when they realised there was no imminent danger, they could have closed everything off and evacuated us after 72 hours – to let people find accommodation, turn off the gas and everything.
“They should have let people move out in a safe pace. Going to hotels, you do not know how Covid-proof they are.
“And it’s not normal times – you can’t go off and have a sandwich and a pint.”
The resident said he was unsurprised when he first found out there was a bomb mere metres from his house, given how badly Exeter was bombed during the Blitz in 1942.
He added: “It was a little bit of excitement in Exeter, wasn’t it?”
As with the others within the now-400m cordon zone, the anonymous resident does not know when his family will be able to go back for more than just the essentials – and a few photos.
In an updated statement, Devon and Cornwall Police said: “Extensive, multi-agency building assessment work is continuing this morning within the 400-metre cordon of the WW2 bomb detonation site on Glenthorne Road, Exeter.
“Every effort is being made to ensure the timely conclusion of the assessments in the hope some evacuated residents may be able to return home this evening.
“However, evacuated residents are advised to work on a worst-case scenario basis, that they will not be able to return home this evening.
“The council has confirmed that those already in hotel accommodation will be able to stay in their hotels tonight if necessary.