50,000 face evacuation in Hannover over World War Two bombs

50,000 face evacuation in Hannover over World War Two bombs

A street with typical half-timbered houses in the centre of Hanover is seen on 24 June 2005

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AFP

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Bombs from World War Two are still being found in Hannover 70 years on

Around 50,000 people in Hannover will be evacuated from their homes on Sunday while experts defuse five World War Two bombs.

The operation is the second largest of its kind carried out in Germany, and will affect around a tenth of the city’s population.

The buildings set to be evacuated include seven care homes, a clinic, and a Continental tyre plant.

Officials hope those affected will be able to return home by the evening.

The evacuations will begin at 09:00 (07:00 GMT) and residents have been advised to take necessary items like medication with them when they leave, as well as turning off gas and electrical appliances.

Rail travel may also be hit by delays after early afternoon, The Local reported.

The city has set up a programme of museum tours, children’s films, and sporting events to help those being evacuated spend the day as pleasantly as possible.

Tens of thousands of soup portions are also being prepared, according to the German news agency DPA.

Allied planes bombed Hannover heavily during World War Two, killing thousands and destroying much of the city.

On 9 October 1943, an especially deadly night, 1,245 people were killed and 250,000 left homeless by 261,000 bombs.

The largest bomb-related evacuation since the war happened on Christmas Day last year, in Augsburg.

Some 54,000 people were evacuated after a 3.8 tonne bomb was unearthed during building work.

Other WW2 bombs recently discovered in Germany

50,000 face evacuation in Hannover over World War Two bombs