London

Soho streets evacuated over WW2 bomb find

Evacuated people
Image caption Hundreds of people were evacuated from properties across Soho

Several streets in London's central Soho district were evacuated after an unexploded World War Two bomb was found.

Police were called to Dean Street at about 13:50 GMT after the ordnance was discovered during building work.

Soho Hotel, the Soho Theatre and the Groucho Club were all evacuated.

A Royal Engineers bomb disposal unit was called in and removed the half-tonne device.

A police cordon was put in place between Oxford Street, Charing Cross Road and Shaftesbury Avenue which have all now been lifted.

Musicals including Mary Poppins at the Prince Edward Theatre, and Les Miserables at the Sondheim Theatre, went ahead as planned.

But singer and author Tracey Thorn had to cancel a book signing at the Groucho Club.

At the scene

BBC London reporter Sarah Lee

Videos on social media showed groups of people fleeing buildings in Soho, which is home to some of the capital's most popular bars, restaurants and theatres.

Tourists have been pushed back from the area and were told to disperse.

A slight sense of panic hit the streets when people heard police shouting to get back.

Image copyright @Charlie628
Image caption A police cordon remains in place around Dean Street

A Ministry of Defence spokeswoman said: "An Army explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) team has been called out to Soho to support the Metropolitan Police after discovery of a 500kg Second World War device.

"The Army EOD team have confirmed the bomb was safe to remove overnight to a location where it will be detonated."

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