A COUPLE have told of how their wedding anniversary celebrations were disrupted when explosions in an ammunition dump at a military base near their hotel blew out windows and sent guests fleeing.

Les and Jan Curtis, from Risca, were among scores of guests at the Acapulco Hotel in Kyrenia, northern Cyprus, who after the blasts last Thursday had to spend much of the night on a neighbouring beach.

Terrified holidaymakers were evacuated from the hotel in the aftermath of the explosions, which began at around 1.30am.

Photographs of the aftermath show broken glass and window frames littering the hotel and its surroundings. Ceilings were also damaged.

South Wales Argus:

Mr Curtis sent the Argus a photograph of his wife and himself on the beach the following day, holding one of the many pieces of shrapnel that landed in the hotel grounds.

"It is a big piece and very heavy. The incident could have been more serious than it was if this had hit anybody," said Mr Curtis.

South Wales Argus:

The couple have been in Cyprus to celebrate their emerald - 55th - wedding anniversary, and the explosions happened on the very day.

" It was very frightening and as we were on the sixth floor of course we had to use the staircase and there was a lot of panic," said Mr Curtis. He and his wife were shaken, but unhurt.

"We spent all night on the beach until 9am in the morning, and were given masks to wear because of the gunpowder smoke in the air.

"I must say the hotel staff have been marvellous to everybody."

Videos showed an intense fire burning at the base following the explosions, and it took several hours to bring under control. Electricity to parts of the area was switched off for a time as a precaution.

Twelve people were treated for minor injuries, following the explosions, which happened at a Turkish military base. Turkey occupies northern Cyprus.

An investigation into the incident is underway, according to the Turkish Defence Ministry.