BOMB disposal experts had to be called in to detonate Victorian dynamite uncovered near Corfe Castle.

It’s thought the three-inch wide unexploded blasting charge had been laying in the rock near Corfe’s Swanage Railway station since the line was built 126 years ago.

A track maintenance worker discovered the relic embedded in chalk rock five feet off the ground at around 3.20pm on Thursday.

Staff decided it still posed a danger and immediately dialled 999, also imposing a speed limit for the steam trains.

An Army bomb disposal team spent 90 minutes making the charge – which did not have a visible detonation device - safe.

They then destroyed it in a field opposite the Norden Park and Ride Car Park.

Swanage Railway infrastructure manager Alistair Hall said: “It’s really incredible and amazing this has been in the side of the railway cutting for 126 years without anyone noticing.”

Hundreds of thousands of trains have passed the spot over the years, he added, and people walked along the cutting when it was out of service from 1972 - 1995.

“Throughout all those years, nobody noticed the Victorian explosive charge – perhaps people thought it was a rock blemish or a fossil.

“Maybe it could have been covered by wild plants?” Mr Hall added.

Experts believe railway navvies left the charge in 1884 as they constructed the cutting through the Challow Hill of the Purbeck Hills.

The £77,000 project along a 10-mile branch line from Wareham to Corfe Castle and Swanage took two years to complete.