Birmingham Rep Theatre explosion leads to evacuation and road closures
Clubs, pubs and a theatre were evacuated after an explosion in Birmingham city centre sparked alarm.
Emergency services flooded the Broad Street area following the sound of a blast in the basement of the Repertory Theatre at around 8.15pm on Tuesday.
Police warned people to stay away from the area and all roads around the theatre and Birmingham Library were closed.
However officers soon realised the blast was due to a technical fault in the theatre's boiler room and not a terrorism-related incident.
The explosion happened in a staff-only area of the Rep, where up to 1,000 theatre-goers had been watching Brief Encounter. No casualties were reported.
Meanwhile the Library of Birmingham was closed on Wednesday 'due to technical issues' as a result of the blast.
Westside BID posted photos from the scene on Twitter:
Birmingham’s top police office has since praised locals for their 'amazing' response to the explosion
Chief Superintendent Danny Long said: “Initially it was unclear what the cause was but despite the potential danger and in true West Midlands Police style, our officers immediately ran into the thick of a very confusing situation.
"The same is to be said for our colleagues in the fire and ambulance services.
“The public’s response to the situation was just brilliant.
"Whether it was picking up the phone and reporting the explosion, helping to shelter evacuees or just offering their support to the emergency services on Twitter they really did their city proud.
“All of the emergency services have well-rehearsed plans in place to deal with major incidents like this.
"Together we work around the clock to keep the people of this brilliant city safe.”