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Retail park could be closed all day as evacuation continues

PUBLISHED: 15:29 27 December 2017 | UPDATED: 16:18 28 December 2017

Emergency services are at Gapton Hall retail park which has been closed on the grounds of public safety. Photo: Liz Coates

Emergency services are at Gapton Hall retail park which has been closed on the grounds of public safety. Photo: Liz Coates

Archant

A busy retail park will be closed for the next few hours and possibly all day as emergency services work to make the area safe.

Emergency services are at Gapton Hall retail park which has been closed on the grounds of public safety. Photo: Liz CoatesEmergency services are at Gapton Hall retail park which has been closed on the grounds of public safety. Photo: Liz Coates

Police and fire crews took the decision to close Gapton Hall retail park in Great Yarmouth in the last hour, evacuating hundreds of shoppers and sealing off the area.

It comes after metal sheeting on the front of two empty units lashed by rain and strong winds appeared to be “peeling off like toilet paper.”

MORE: Police close shopping estate after wind blows roof off building

Simon Mason, station manager at Yarmouth fire station said he and his crew had gone shop to shop advising them of the danger and what they should do.

In response all the shops had opted to close and shoppers were told to leave the park.

Retail park staff have also been told to move their cars.

Mr Mason said: “We cannot predict if anything will come loose or how much of it could come loose.

“The danger is that we lose a piece of metal and it goes flying across the car park. We have closed the retail park on the grounds of public safety.

“There were a considerable amount of people in the area.”

A police van is stood at the entrance access to the park which will remain closed until it is made safe.

Staff at Outfit are reportedly making cups of tea for the police and fire crews co-ordinating the evacuation.

Meanwhile John Karasava of Workmen, which runs the site, said efforts were being made to contact the contractors working on the two empty units that once housed Brantano and Poundstretcher.

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