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Suspicious package detonated and evacuation zone lifted following Ipswich car park discovery

PUBLISHED: 14:10 04 February 2019 | UPDATED: 15:18 04 February 2019

Police in Portman Road after the evacuation  Picture: ARCHANT

Police in Portman Road after the evacuation Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

Police have lifted a cordon around an area of Ipswich after the discovery of a suspicious package led to the evacuation of two buildings.

Officers were called at about 12.30pm to a car park behind a building at the junction of Portman Road and Handford Road.

A bomb disposal unit arrived at the scene about an hour later.

At least one building on either side of the road was evacuated and an exclusion zone put in place, said police.

It is understood a small package was detonated by the bomb squad before the cordon was lifted at about 3pm.

The Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) confirmed that its Mariner House offices were evacuated as part of the incident.

The four-floor building houses the NSFT’s community mental healthcare service.

A spokesman said calls were diverted during the incident and advised anyone with an appointment to call the usual number and make alternative arrangements.

St Matthew’s Primary School, on the other side of Portman Road, was unaffected by the cordon and parents were able to collect children at the end of the day.

A police spokesman said enquiries are ongoing to establish the exact nature of the package and the circumstances surrounding the discovery.

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