Law, a hand grenade and two (not) smoking barrels — life in southwest London suburbs

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By Judge John Hack on

Staff at high street solicitors’ practice unearth a disused mini-arsenal as they go round with dustpan and brush


A law firm in a sleepy southwest London suburb was in danger of becoming one of the most radical alternative business structures yet — by being blown sky high thanks to a hand grenade.

According to a report in the Kingston Guardian newspaper, staff at Pearson Hards Solicitors in New Malden scratched their heads and then gulped several times when they made the bombshell discovery during a recent “tidy up”.

The five-lawyer firm — which traces its local roots to the 1930s and has a standard high street mix of private client and small business practice areas — declined to confirm the story to Legal Cheek, pleading client confidentiality.


However, the local paper claimed the unexploded grenade was found along with a couple of rusty old shotguns in the bowels of the firm’s offices.

The report goes on to make it clear there is no suggestion that anyone at the firm was aware of the weapons’ presence before they were unearthed as part of a (late) spring clean.

Indeed, the episode appears to have reflected well on the capital’s Metropolitan Police, an organisation that, let’s face it, needs all the good PR it can get these days. The Guardian quoted the local newsagent as saying:

“The police came and cordoned the road off. People were inconvenienced but they were quite quick.”