Mustard gas woods are made safe

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The final stages of work to remove contaminated soil from an area of woodland near Woodhall Spa is expected to be completed this week.

Kirby Lane was closed to traffic this week to allow the Ministry of Defence-led operation in Roughton Moor Woods to go ahead.

It follows the recent discovery of mustard gas.

East Lindsey District Council said the road closure is necessary for ‘the safety of those working on the site and the wider community’.

Police were initially called to the woods on October 1 after what the force described as a World War Two device.

Two days later, police said the discovery related to mustard gas canisters.

It merged that two people were injured after discovering the canisters while searching for antique bottles.

They were treated in hospital for burns and minor breathing problems.

Kirkby Lane was closed as emergency services - and experts from The Army and RAF - dealt with the canisters.

Other canisters were found in a lake at Stixwould near Woodhall Spa.

Three people were arrested on suspicion of possessing a noxious substance and later released on bail.

Properties in Lincoln and Woodhall Spa were searched by police who declared a ‘major incident.

The emergency services praised residents for their response and more details were released at a packed public meeting held at the Petwood Hotel in Woodhall Spa on 
October 12. Police revealed 14 boxes - containing 150 campaigners - had been discovered.

It is believed the canisters were buried in the woods by troops based in the Woodhall Spa area during the Second World War.