The area, also known as OSLA Plantation, has been cordoned off after the discovery of canisters found by people bottle digging in the woods.
The canisters found on Sunday 1 October were taken to Porton Down, the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, to identify what they contained. We now understand the contents to be Mustard Gas and it is believed the canisters have been in situ since when the site was an operational RAF base.
No-one has been seriously injured; two people who found the canisters were taken to hospital and received treatment for burns and minor respiratory problems on Sunday, they returned home the same day. If anyone has recently recovered any bottles or other containers from this area they are asked to contact 101.
We are working with other emergency services, military and health partners to ensure the continued safety of anyone who uses the woods and to establish if any further canisters are present. We would ask people to avoid the area for the time being.
The area formally known as RAF Woodhall Spa opened in February 1942 as a satellite of RAF Coningsby and closed in the mid 1960s.
We will update with further information when we have it.
netcompsys wrote: TV and Press reports today that mustard gas canisters have been found in Roughton Woods
Apparantly two people hunting for old bottles discovered the canister(s) and were briefly hospitalised
The drama continues, initialy two people were arrested, but now a third has also been arrested and a house in Woodhall Spa has been searched by Police wearing gas masks
Ostler's Plantation was the site of Woodhall's bomb store. I wrote an article on it for Airfield Review 56, April 1991. I would have though that any discovered mustard gas would be the sample canisters used for demonstration purposes in the airfield's gas chamber and not weapons intended for dropping on the enemy - these prolific weapons were stored at the MUs.
Ostler's is split into two by the B-road to Kirby on Bain. From the map it seems that the northern part has been renamed Roughton Moor. The bomb dump was in the southern half
Mustard Gas found north of Woodhall Spa
06 Oct 2017 14:54 #4
Police confirmed a 38-year-old man and woman from Lincoln, and a second man, from Woodhall Spa, have been detained on suspicion of possession of a noxious substance.
There is no suggestion of a terrorist link but police want to know why the lung and eye-burning gas was buried in the woods and also at a lake in nearby Stixwould.
The drama began on Sunday when two people digging for old and collectable glass bottles in the wood had to be taken to hospital with minor burns and respiratory problems after they struck the mustard gas canisters.
There has been a large police presence in Woodhall Spa and on Wednesday officials wearing gas masks descended on a house between Nettleham Road and Riseholme Road, in Lincoln, resulting in the three arrests.
From the photograph they are more likely a clutch of No 76 Grenades (Self-Igniting Phosphorous). Not only the Home Guard had these but also held in many locations for airfield defence. Yes, they will burn skin and fumes cause lung irritation. Simple glass bottle containers.
I do not recall where i picked this up, but Woodhall Spa was I though where a number of the Airbourne Units were based before D-Day and Arnhem, so i suppose it is possible that the source might not be RAF or indeed Home Guard
The RSP for Woodhall shows that Roughton is outside the boundary of the station. I suspect those canisters had nothing to do with the RAF, re the comment: 'There was also an army camp near where the canisters were found.'
Some gems from the recent press:
Experts have been left baffled as to what a weapon used in the First World War was doing at the site of a Second World War base
Loads of police at bungalow on way in Woodhall Spa - something going on!" said ***** ****** on Twitter
The use of mustard gas was banned in the 1920s but the presence of these shells here raises a lot of historical questions.
I'm surprised that the press hasn't picked up the fact that the Dambusters were based here. They'd have a field day generating rumours from that fact. 'Secret plan to gas Hitler...' for a start.
Fairly sure there were no Airborne Forces here, both 617 and 627 were very busy dropping bombs from before D-Day until the war ended, so no space for visitors.
Plan A is always more effective when the problem you are working on understands that Plan B will involve the use of dynamite
The Dower House, a private house at that time, was the Headquarters of the 7th Battalion the King’s Own Scottish Borderers – one of the three infantry Battalions that comprised the 1st Airlanding Brigade based here in Woodhall at Kirkby Moor Camp.
The 7th KOSBs was a Territorial unit recruited in Galloway that came to Woodhall from the Orkney and Shetland islands where it had the role of being the Defence Force. It was the only Scots and Territorial unit to fight at Arnhem and this action would be its first and last action in the war. Lt Col Robert Payton-Reid was the commanding officer, who would be the only battalion commander to return with his unit from the battle.
The 7th KOSBs flew to Arnhem in 56 Horsa gliders from Down Ampney and Blakehill Farm, and a Hamilcar glider from Tarrant Rushton.
The Battalion’s strength was of 765 officers and men when it went in to fight at Arnhem, of this total only 76 were evacuated. Of the others: 112 officers and men died in action and a further 577 missing in action.