Many of you will remember the discovery of a World War Two German bomb on Portland in March 1995.

Incredibly it was found under the centre circle of Portland United’s soccer pitch at Grove Road where thousands of footballers had played during the course of 50 years, unaware they were kicking off directly over 1,100lbs of high explosive.

The bomb came to light during hastily stopped surface skimming work to turn the pitch into a quarry. A massive operation swung into action to evacuate 4,000 people from their homes near the bomb as the spirit of wartime Britain took over the community, many of whom were put up in holiday camps.

Cometh the hour cometh the man, goes the saying, and everyone’s prayers were answered when Captain Mike Lobb, pictured above, and his team of Royal Engineers tackled defusing the bomb.

There were many problems – fears about the looting of empty homes and what to do with pets were just two of them – but most people pitched in to help and some landlords even turned the clock back to wartime days with swing music, parties and singalongs.

It was no joke when the mass evacuation began on April 1, 1995, but all went well with the £120,000 bomb operation and Captain Lobb detonated a controlled explosion late on April 2. The bomb casing even found pride of place later at Portland Museum.

To crown it all the whole drama was reconstructed in 1998 for an episode of the BBC series 999.

And as for the bomb? It went on to be displayed at Portland Museum, as you can see here.

Dorset Echo: