CHILDREN, pets and elderly residents were evacuated from Oxpens in March 1973 after a bomb hoax at Toomers (Oils) Ltd fuel depot.

A call to the home of an Oxford Times reporter said the Angry Brigade, a left-wing anarchist group, had planted a bomb primed to explode at 9pm on Friday, March 16.

More than 200 people left their homes as police sealed off the area and fire crews stationed themselves nearby.

Families were evacuated from the surrounding street and the Christ Church Buildings and taken to the Oxford City Fire Brigade Headquarters.

As 9pm passed, two police officers and two representatives of Toomers went into the depot to check the six storage tanks.

The alert was called off when they emerged unscathed, with police operating a shuttle service of panda cars to return the elderly to their homes.

Just 24 hours later, the centre of Abingdon was sealed off for almost five hours after a suspected parcel bomb was found in a telephone box outside the post office.