Piccadilly Gardens is on lock down after reports of a suspicious package.
Greater Manchester Police have cordoned off the area as they attend the package.
Photos show the police standing guard around Piccadilly Gardens.
The cordon covers the outside of McDonalds, Piccadilly Gardens, and the area near the tram stop.
Big chunk of piccadilly gardens cordoned off for a suspicious package (rucksack on the left) pic.twitter.com/kp5R0x2UFE— Francis Xavier Sowerby Thomas (@FrankyBabes) May 3, 2019
Please follow directions from officers at #PiccadillyGardens. If you are working in the city and have been asked to stay indoors, please do so while officers carry out their enquiries. We will provide updates as soon as we can. #Manchester #CityCentre— G M Police (@gmpolice) May 3, 2019
A GMP spokesman said:
A cordon is in place in Piccadilly Gardens after reports of a suspicious package were made. A man aged 26 has been detained by police and enquiries into the incident are ongoing.
They've finished going through the bag. Cordon is being pushed further back. One cop shouting we should "clear piccadilly gardens" altogether. In the distance, more sirens. @MENnewsdesk pic.twitter.com/2dgsZaiZtT— Francis Xavier Sowerby Thomas (@FrankyBabes) May 3, 2019
I’ve never seen anything like it - the whole of Piccadilly Gardens has been closed and cordoned off due to a suspicious package. pic.twitter.com/ZPXpieuURv— Laurence Hebberd (@LaurenceHebberd) May 3, 2019
Police are currently pushing people further back, as sniffer dogs comb the area.
Sniffer dog running around the affected area.— Francis Xavier Sowerby Thomas (@FrankyBabes) May 3, 2019
Digital zoom is a wonderful thing. pic.twitter.com/RfJoVFlZWT
We have NO services operating Piccadilly - Victoria or St Peters Square - Piccadilly. Updates to follow. https://t.co/6wce8Xg79I— Manchester Metrolink (@MCRMetrolink) May 3, 2019
15/34/42/42A/42B/43/111/142/143. Due to the closure of Piccadilly Bus Station. Services will start from Princess Street until further notice. pic.twitter.com/V9z0L297vs— Stagecoach GM (@StagecoachGM) May 3, 2019
Piccadilly Gardens has been cordoned off by police after reports of a suspicious package. Surrounding buildings have been evacuated pic.twitter.com/cGcPeIJSNs— ✨Jazzmine ✨ (@jazzmineamber) May 3, 2019
According to reports the suspicious package was a backpack left in Piccadilly Gardens near McDonald's.
According to shop workers I’ve spoken to, the suspect package is a backpack that was left in Picc Gardens opposite the McDonalds in the area where the Manchester Markets is being held today. @MENnewsdesk— SteveRobsonMEN (@SteveRobson04) May 3, 2019
Fire engines have now arrived at the scene.
UPDATE: According to the police the 'suspicious package' found in Piccadilly Gardens 'is not believed to be a viable device', although the area still remains cordoned off until their enquiries have been concluded.
This is an ongoing story, more updates when we get them.