A large safe, which stopped a 45-tonne work boat in its tracks, has been discovered at the bottom of the Regent's Canal in London

It’s not what you’d expect to find lurking in the depths of the Regent’s Canal in King’s Cross, London!

The large safe was only discovered after a 45 tonne work boat crashed into it, stopping the vessel dead in its tracks near Camley Street bridge.

It had to be removed with a crane, taking staff from the Canal and River Trust nearly an hour.

The boat was transporting machinery away from St Pancras Lock, where the trust has recently completed a £150,000 restoration project.

Unfortunately, there were no clues as to the original of the safe, as it was empty and the back of it had been broken open.

It is not the only unusual item to be discovered in the Regent’s Canal.

Part of the Regent's Canal in London

Corbridge Crescent on the Regent’s Canal. Credit: Canal & River Trust

In recent years, the trust’s teams have also helped to recover more than 60 footballs in one spot behind a school in Willesden, a pizza delivery bike (including soggy pizza), and even an unexploded World War Two hand grenade with the pin still in.

Other unusual finds discovered in the trust’s canals include six sunken cars found at various locations in London and various weapons including machetes knifes and meat cleavers.

These were usually found by bridges and were handed in to the police.

In 2014, they also recovered a spate of abandoned safes from the water, including five from the canal adjacent to Regent’s Park.

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The Canal and River Trust’s Stewart Qureshi, who helped remove the safe from the canal, said: “We do find unusual things in the canal from time to time, but it’s usually when we drain the water out to make repairs.”

“We suspect the raided safe was dropped off the nearby bridge and it’s only because our work boat has a deeper hull than most boats that we discovered it. We’ve been in touch with the police to see what they have to say about it,” he continued.

Qureshi added that the canals in London are now more popular “than at any time in living memory.”

“There’s more boats, people using the towpath and volunteers helping us to look after them. They’re a secret part of London, that are probably becoming less and less secret every year,” he noted

“So probably not the best place to dump a something if you’re trying to get away with a crime!” advised Qureshi.