This film is part of Free

Bomb Squad

Royal Navy Bomb Disposal Unit based in Plymouth covers the South West as a service for unexploded munitions.

Current affairs 1963 5 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for South West Film and Television Archive


The Royal Navy’s Mine and Bomb Disposal Unit is based in Plymouth and covers England for disused munitions found on land and at sea. The service is called out to disarm, make safe and explode any live munitions such as this World War I bomb found on a beach at Portwrinkle in Cornwall. Naval Sub Lieutenant Jenkins explains to reporter David Mudd the work of the service with men who are qualified divers and who operate at sea demining and exploding ordnance.

Plymouth was bombed extensively by the Nazi Luftwaffe during the Second World War because of its naval base and the city suffered destruction and the loss of civilian lives. Bombs and munitions are still occasionally found in the city when major works or new construction takes place. Unexploded Bombs or UXB, Ordnance or UXO, Improvised Explosive Devices or IEDs and Explosive Ordnance Disposal or EOD are common to war-torn areas of the world and the Royal Engineers have been deployed for training and support making civilian areas safe again. Since 1997 the United Nations lead through UNMAS a coordinated approach to the threat posed by mines, explosive remnants of war and improvised explosive devices.