Shopping centre evacuated after suspected gas leak in Nottingham

Shoppers have been evacuated from the Victoria Centre in Nottingham after a suspected gas leak.

While people inside the Victoria Centre have been asked to leave, residents in the 400 flats above the shopping area have been told to remain inside.

A cordon is in place taping off the main entrances to the shopping centre, including on Upper Parliament Street, while officers investigate the cause.

The fire service says four vehicles were sent to the incident just after midday today (20 November).Nottingham City Transport (NCT) says diversions are in place for a number of bus services.

Other witnesses have described the city centre as "chaos" with diverted buses and heavy traffic.

Motorists have been advised to avoid the area.

Kieron Carlisle, who lives in the flats above the centre, said: "On the intercom it says there is no need to evacuate and we are advised to stay where we are.

"I can see they have got gas companies going round with monitors."

One shopper said: "Clumber street is closed so it’s just chaos around all the nearby roads and people trying to find out where they can get buses from."My car is in the car park so I think I’ll have to leave it until later."Area Manager Mick Sharman, of Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: "We are aware that people in the vicinity are asking why they cannot leave their flats."We understand the frustration but it is for your safety and to allow our crews to bring this incident to a close as swiftly as we can."A spokeswoman for the Victoria Centre said: "We can confirm that there has been an incident in the area and on the advice of the fire service we have had to evacuate the centre and await further instruction."We’re unable to share any further information at this stage but we will issue an update as soon as we can.”