Suspected bomb hoax sparks panic

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Police and bomb experts raced to cordon off part of Daventry High Street in the early hours of Saturday 
following a bomb alert.

Police were called out shortly after midnight when they received reports that a suspicious suitcase had been left outside It’s A Gift. Once on the scene they cleared the street of people and set up barriers, they called in bomb disposal experts.

Leanne Campbell, manager at Fridays, said: “The police cordon started outside our door. They also blocked the Bowen Square walk-through. We were all asked to move our cars, but we weren’t told much about what was happening.

“Thankfully it was late on so it didn’t have a lot of impact on our trade, but our customers wanting to go to The Square had to walk the long way around.”

Police say the suitcase was examined and found not to be dangerous. It was taken away as evidence.

Tracy Hodgkiss, store manager at It’s A Gift, said: “We didn’t know anything had happened until we opened on Saturday morning and customers were asking us about it.

Northamptonshire Police say they arrested, and later released on police bail, a 19-year-old in connection with the incident and indicated it is being treated as a bomb hoax.

They are appealing for anyone who may have seen anything suspicious or something they believe may be connected to the incident, to get in touch with them via the 101 phone number or Crimsetoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.