SOUTHAMPTON residents were forced to evacuate their homes following a bomb scare in a normally quiet street.

Explosives experts raced to Swaythling after an unexploded “incendiary bomb” was found in a garden in Havenstone Way.

Police blocked off nearby Wessex Lane with paramedics and firefighters also on the scene on Tuesday afternoon.

A 50-metre cordon was put in place and people living within that area were evacuated.

And motorists were urged to stay away.

Shocked residents looked on in curiosity as emergency services worked to make the area safe.

Mike Jones, 43, a sheet metal worker who lives in Swaythling described the event as shocking.

He told a Daily Echo reporter at the scene that he was not allowed to cross the police cordon and to return to his home.

Meanwhile, his wife was ordered by police not to leave their home.

Another resident, Gerry Muse added: “The police knocked my door and said that I had to leave the premises more or less straight away. All the neighbours were told to do that that live in this close. They said that it was probably a Second World War bomb.”

Daily Echo: Swaythling resident, Gerry Muse

The 53-year-old said that his neighbour, an amateur metal detectorist, had found the explosive buried around ten inches underground in a shared garden.

At first, he thought it was simply a metal tube, however, after an internet search, believed he had found a German incendiary bomb so, called the emergency services.

Following an almost three-hour ordeal which started at around 1.30pm, an Explosive Ordnance Disposal team took the bomb to a police training centre in Netley.

A controlled explosion was carried out at 4.15pm and all residents were able to return to their homes.

However, the scare caused traffic chaos with queues backing up onto Long Lane in Eastleigh - all roads have since reopened.

Anyone who finds unexploded ordnance should call 999.