David Dodds, the managing director of Sackers, a scrapyard and scrap metal dealer in Ipswich, has a theory about how the safe full of money came to be in his possession.
"The suspicion is it could have been an old factory that was due for demolition and it was in the corner of their offices. When it's demolished then all the scrap goes into the bin, comes into the works and then we treat it," he said.
According to The Ipswich Star, Dodds said that lots of safes come through his business, but it's exceptionally rare for anything to be found inside, much less anything valuable.
Nevertheless, back in April, his crew opened up four safes that had wound up in their scrapyard. Three, not unexpectedly, contained nothing at all. The fourth one, however, contained the huge cash haul.
Many of the bills were damaged from water that had seeped in over the years. Similarly, much of it was so old that it is no longer considered legal tender in Britain, although it can be exchanged for more modern money.
The money was put into police custody. The police said that they wanted to see if it was somehow the proceeds of a crime. Additionally, they said they wanted to give anyone who could be the money's rightful owner a chance to make their case and claim it.
At least one person tried to convince the police the money was theirs, but "within about 30 nanoseconds" authorities realized the person had no case.
After a few months, a court determined that the money rightfully belonged to the scrapyard. However, Dodds won't be keeping the money. Instead, he said he would be donating it to two hospitals: East Anglian Children's Hospice and St. Elizabeth Hospice.
"We wanted to give the money to somewhere local so it could really make a difference," said Helen Crapnell, the marketing manager at Sackers.
As reported at the time by The Inquisitr, back in June a tourist visited a small Canadian museum that had been in possession of a safe for decades, unable to open it but letting tourists take a crack at it. The tourist was able to open it on the first try. Unfortunately, the only things in the safe were a handful of receipts and an old notebook.