Fisherman pulls six Second World War machine guns from canal

·3-min read
Nigel Lamford with one of the six 'Sten' Mk.II submachine guns. (SWNS)
Nigel Lamford with one of the six 'Sten' Mk.II submachine guns. (SWNS)

A magnet fisherman was left shocked when he pulled six Second World War submachine guns from a canal.

Nigel Lamford, 50, lifted the 'Sten' Mk II guns out of the water using his specially-made magnet, which can lift over a ton of metal.

He made the find last month after throwing his device into a boggy canal in Weedon Bec, Northamptonshire, near the former Royal Ordnance Depot site.

He pulled out a magazine, followed by the gun and stock he re-assembled on the bank.

Lamford, from Kettering, Northamptonshire, said: "A find like that was just the best find ever in my opinion.

"You can find some amazing stuff, but I've never found so many guns in such good condition together."

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The guns were found in a canal near Weedon Bec, Northamptonshire. (SWNS)
The guns were found in a canal near Weedon Bec, Northamptonshire. (SWNS)

The grime-covered weapon was the first of six Lamford and his friends pulled from the depths of the canal.

Thrilled with the discovery, the magnet fishermen posed with the weapons before they were taken away to a local military museum.

Father-of-three Lamford thinks the weapons – which could be fired if they were cleaned out – are worth around £1,000 each.

The auto-electrician pulled the Stens from the canal during a 10-hour fishing session on 9 January.

The famous submachine gun was one of the most widely-used weapons by British forces in the Second World War, with over two million being made.

Lamford has previously uncovered artillery shells, grenades, knives and flintlock muskets from the 18th century.

He accidentally closed down part of Reading after discovering an artillery shell in the Thames.

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The guns were handed to a local museum. (SWNS)
The guns were handed to a local museum. (SWNS)

Lamford said: "I've recovered about 61 guns now in total. You don't get many very often but the place we were dredging was the UK's biggest ordinance depo for 150 years, so it goes right back to Napoleonic times.

"You obviously can't have weapons in the UK though so they are always surrendered to police to be destroyed, or given away to museums to clean up.

"We got special permission to be there because it's private land."

Lamford runs Britain's biggest magnet fishing YouTube channel, 'Northantsmagnetfishing', with viewers from across the world.

He said: "[Magnet fishing] is getting really big in the UK now. When I first started three years ago there were maybe 10 YouTube channels for it, now there are over 100 in the UK.

"It's an amazing community too. Usually there's five of us in a group, and we go out looking together and have a bit of fun, that's the main thing."

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