Greater Manchester Police rushed to the waterside when the alarm was raised shortly after 7.50am this morning. A local business owner told of how he was approached by the fisherman shortly after he had pulled the suspected explosive from the water. Joan Ward, who operates a food van, said: “A chap came for a cup of tea and said ‘I’ve just fished a bomb of out the canal so I phoned the police.'”
She said a nearby shop was evacuated and he was ordered to pack up for the day.
She added: “He’s still there now talking to them and the bomb’s on the side of the canal.
“They’ve shut all the roads and said they could be closed all day, so we’ve got to close.
“Budget Greeting Cards on Chapter Street has been evacuated as well.
“You can see all the staff standing around outside.”
Greater Manchester Police released a statement saying the bomb dispoal unit is investigating.
They said: “Officers were called shortly after 7.50am this morning to reports of a suspicious item being found near the Rochdale Canal on Grimshaw Lane in Newton Heath.
“EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) are to attend the scene and assess the item.
“A number of buildings have been evacuated and some road closures are in place as a precaution at this time.”
John Flanagan, a Labour councillor in the Miles Platting and Newton Heath ward, thanked officers for their help.
He tweeted: “Thanks to GMP and the bomb squad for their response. Stay safe.”
More to follow…