'I have been shaking all afternoon' - Residents' reaction after bomb squad is called to Sheffield street

Residents have described being evacuated from their homes in a state of panic after the bomb squad was called in to deal with a 'suspicious item' found on their quiet Sheffield street.

Wednesday, 9th October 2019, 6:22 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th October 2019, 10:16 pm

People were ordered to leave about 40 homes within a 100 metre cordon following the discovery at an address in Uttley Close, Darnall, this afternoon.

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The army’s explosive ordinance disposal team was called in after a suspicious item was found during a search of a house.

The bomb squad. Picture Scott Merrylees

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Police said arrests have been made in relation to the incident and two women from Sheffield remain in police custody for questioning this evening.

A number of residents told how a property that was sealed off had been empty for some time but some new people had recently moved in.

However, they added that they had not seen them out and about, and that their windows had been covered for several weeks and the bins had not been taken out.

Many were in a state of shock over what has happened.

A suspicious item was found in Darnall. Picture Scott Merrylees

A nurse who gave her name as Zam said: “The police just said to me 'its not safe' and that people had to leave, I couldn't believe it.

“People were worried. I saw a woman in her dressing gown carrying her baby asking someone down the phone what has happened.

“It is a very quiet street so it is a surprise.”

Police sealed off the area. Picture Scott Merrylees

A mum, who has lived in the area for about 10 years, added: “I have been shaking all afternoon, I didn't know what I would be coming back to.”

She added: “Some new people moved in to a house but their windows have been covered and the bins have not been taken out so I don't know if they were still living there or not.”

Jeanette Waller, aged 47, added: “It makes you a bit on edge to know that something like this has happened right where you live.”

A 66-year-old supermarket worker, who went to stay with her daughter for the afternoon, said: “At first I wasn't surprised because there is a lot of crime in the area, but when I heard the bomb squad was here then that makes you feel a little different.

“It was worrying when the police told me I had to leave but when it is something as serious as this they need to do it.

“It's better to be safe than sorry so I'm glad they evacuated people.”

She added that a police cordon had been up outside a property since at least 9.30am this morning. Two alleyways nearby had also been sealed off.

The nearby Phillimore Community Primary School opened its doors to let evacuated residents shelter inside and have a hot drink.

People were let back into their homes at about 4pm.

Chief Superintendent Stuart Barton said: "The suspicious item was found during a search of a property and we are following standard procedures to ensure the safety of the nearby residents and officers at the scene.

"We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause to local residents, these precautionary measures are in place to ensure safety, and we will be in continual contact with those affected until they are able to return to their homes.

"I would ask people not to approach the cordon, to allow clear access for the specialists to complete their work."