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Bag of rubbish sparks 999 scare in York
Updated 4:44pm Friday 20th December 2013 in News
This live event has finished
- Suspect package found in Petergate
- Streets closed near Minster
- Local businesses told to let nobody in or out
Police were called around midday today to reports of an unattended bag spotted near a compacter bin close near St Michael le Belfry Church on High Petergate.
The road was closed from its junction with Stonegate to Bootham Bar, and part of the plaza outside the Minster was also cordoned off.
Staff and customers at businesses along High Petergate were evacuated, and chefs from the Guy Fawkes Inn had to shut off ovens and abandon the meals they were cooking.
Shops further down the road were told not to let anyone in our out of the property.
Michelle Ruddiman, owner of Image Gallery near Bootham Bar, said she heard a commotion while she was on the phone at around 12.30pm, but did not know what was going on until she tried to leave the shop and was stopped by a police officer.
"He said if I left I wouldn't be able to get back into the shop."
By 1pm police confirmed the package was not suspicious. The cordon was lifted and people were allowed back into shops and businesses.
Police said they were confident the call was made to them with good intent.
Official police statement:
"The incident in High Petergate has now been resolved.
The bag was not suspicious and officers are satisfied that the call to the police was made with good intent.
The cordon has been lifted and people have been allowed to return to the evacuated buildings.
The report related to a rucksack and a black bag which turned out to contain rubbish."
Police have confirmed to The Press that the incident is now over. They say two bags were left unattended. One was a rucksack and the other a black bag containing rubbish.
2 more pictures taken a few minutes ago:
Victoria Prest at the scene says police are now removing the cordon. The incident looks to be over safely.
Reporter Victoria Prest, on the scene, says police are searching near the bike racks near the Guy Fawkes Inn and St Michael le Belfrey Church.
Another pic by Haydn Lewis at Bootham Bar:
Bootham Bar has been sealed off by police, and Minster security staff have sealed off the entrance to the cathedral near St Michael le Belfrey, says deputy news editor Haydn Lewis.
Official statement from North Yorkshire Police
Police were called at around 12pm today following a reports of an unattended bag outside a property on High Petergate in York.
As a precaution, officers have placed a cordon in place and have evacuated the property while they attempt to identify the owner of the bag.
We will release further details when we are able
Dean Court Hotel has been evacuated. It's a 'suspicious package'. #York— @MattAdamKeay 20 December 2013
If you are in the area, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with pcitures or to tell us what you can see. We're awaiting an official statement from North Yorkshire Police.
Police have just told me its a bomb scare next to the minster #york— @RugsoftheWorld 20 December 2013
A couple of pictures from the scene by our deputy news editor Haydn Lewis
A Petergate shopkeeper has told The Press that police have said a suspect package has been found. He says Petergate is cordoned off between St Michael le Belfrey and Minster Gates.
RT @york_travel: Duncombe Place closed due to Police incident— @adamdavies08 20 December 2013
Seems to something going on outside #York Minster. Police have closed Petergate. A lot of vehicles turned up.— @MattAdamKeay 20 December 2013
POLICE have cordoned off a large area of York city-centre.
Large numbers of officers are in Petergate, Minster Gates, Duncombe Place and the area around York Minster.
A cordon is in place in Minster Gates.
A member of staff at the Dean Court Hotel has told The Press police have told them to lock their doors and not let anyone in or out.
More to follow...
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