Stoke & Staffordshire

Police probe house 'grenade blast' in Burton-upon-Trent

Road closed following explosion
Image caption Goodman Street was closed for police investigations following the explosion

Police investigating an explosion at a house in Staffordshire, believe it may have been caused by a grenade thought to be at least 10 years old.

A 49-year-old man and a woman aged 18, who were in the house in Burton-upon-Trent at the time of the blast on 1 March at 2100 GMT, were unhurt.

Windows in the Goodman Street terraced property were blown out.

Preliminary investigations suggest the type of device used went out of service in 2001 but could be from the 1950s.

Police said the investigation was running alongside an initiative called Operation Enigma, which has been targeting infighting between rival groups and their associates in the Burton area.

Gangs on streets

Residents were invited to a meeting in St Chad's church hall by police and community leaders on 2 March to discuss the issue.

Last week Burton-based Ch Insp Phil Fortun said police had had a great deal of support from local community leaders.

"There has been talk in the community of gangs on the streets, but I want to make it extremely clear that Burton does not have an issue with gangs," he said.

"Burton is not like some big, inner city areas which can suffer gang violence.

"However, we are well aware that there are rival factions who are involved in criminal activity in the town and beyond."

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