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Houses evacuated and roads closed after man arrested for explosives offences in Derbyshire

Houses were evacuated and nearby roads closed after a man was arrested on suspicion of explosives offences in Derbyshire.

Officers attended an address in Acorn Drive in Belper just after 6pm on Friday after officers were called to reports of a concern for the safety of a man.

A search of the house was made and a number of suspicious items were found, Derbyshire Police said.

A 100-metre cordon was imposed following advice from explosive disposal experts, the force added, saying it could provide “no indication” as to how long the evacuation and road closures will be in place.

A police spokesperson said it was not being treated as a “terrorist incident”.

A bomb disposal team pictured in Acorn Drive, Belper

‘The people who live near know who it is’

An eyewitness told reporters at the scene: “From what I can gather, police have been knocking on the houses, advising people to leave.

“They’ve not forced them but advised them to go out.

“They’ve told them they’ll ring when it’s safe to return and they’re opening up the Strutt Community Centre for people who live in the area to go to tonight.”

The woman said the evacuees “seem okay”, adding: “They’re probably surprised and concerned that you don’t know who is living near you.

“The people who live near know who it is.”

Police in the village of Belper, Derbyshire on Saturday, 4 February
Police at the scene in the village of Belper

The Strutt Centre in Derby Road was assigned to serve as a rest centre for residents forced to leave their homes.

Police said residents whose homes were evacuated have now been allowed to return to their properties.

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