An antique bomb that had been sitting outside a Pembrokeshire house and used as a garden ornament for more than 70 years was taken away and detonated by the bomb squad this week.

The bomb had been outside the house of Sian and Jeffrey Edwards, of Dartmouth Gardens in Milford Haven since just after the Second World War, but in fact dates back much further than that.

“I have lived in this street since I was three,” said Jeffrey. “And it has always been here.”

He said that the bomb had been found by the previous occupants of his house, the Morris family.

“The father used to go round delivering lemonade on a horse and cart and was known as Pops Morris,” said Jeffrey.

“He found it on Broad Haven beach and brought it back on his horse and cart, it has been in front of the house ever since.”

The bomb which dates from 1880 to 1890 is believed to have been fired from a warship using Broad Haven beach as target practice.

The bomb had become part of the house’s features. The couple who lived there after the Morris family sunk it into cement in the front garden and when Jeffrey and wife Sian moved in in 1982, they painted it red to match their windowsills.

Nobody thought the bomb had any charge and after gardening Sian used to bang her trowel on it to get rid of any loose earth.

All was well until Jeffrey and Sian got a knock on the door on Wednesday evening. A police officer said that it would be necessary to take photos of the device and send them onto the MOD.

Within an hour the officer was back on Jeffrey and Sian’s doorstep saying that the bomb squad would be arriving the next day.

At 8.30am on Thursday the police arrived on the street, followed by the bomb squad and the fire brigade.

There was some talk of the street being evacuated and Jeffrey told the officers that he and Sian would stay in the house regardless.

“If the house goes up, we are going up with it,” he told them.

In the end it was not necessary to evacuate but, after an x-ray, the bomb disposal experts did find that the shell still had a small charge.

“There was still a little bit of life in the old girl,” said Jeffrey. “They couldn’t leave it here just in case it decided to blow.”

The experts worked throughout the day slowly digging the bomb out of the concrete. It was then taken under police escort to a quarry in Walwyn’s Castle where it was covered in five tonnes of sand and detonated the next day.

“I was sorry to see It go,” said Jeffrey. “It’s been part of my life all those years. It was sad to think of being blown to smithereens.”

Jeffrey said that he was delighted to hear that the bomb had split clean in half when detonated. The markings on it revealed that it dated back to 1880 or 1890 and it is now likely that it will be acquired by a museum.

“It’s causing so much interest,” said Jeff. “I like to think it will go to a far far better home.”