The public has been warned to stay away from a retail park in the Midlands as police deal with an “ongoing incident”.
Footage posted on social media appeared to show armed officers at the scene in Bermuda Park in Nuneaton.
Warwickshire police tweeted: “Officers are currently dealing with an ongoing incident at Bermuda Park, #Nuneaton. Please avoid the area.”
A staff member in the retail park, which includes a cinema, restaurants, Holiday Inn and fitness centre, said: “We are on lockdown.”
Unconfirmed reports on social media said armed officers were dealing with a man who had taken hostages inside the bowling alley there.
A witness told BBC News: “When we were leaving there were police standing around the bowling alley, there were police cars outside the main entrance, with police officers in full body armour.”
Witness Sarah Fleming said a police officer confirmed to her that an armed man was holding hostages at MFA Bowl.
She told Sky News: “We got notification that someone had a shotgun inside the bowling alley. We were inside Frankie and Benny’s and obviously we went on lockdown, no-one was allowed in or out.
Then we had notification from the police that he actually had hostages.
“Everyone has been a bit up in the air, don’t know what’s going on and obviously there is a lot of children in here as well which has been quite an experience for them. So everyone is a little bit scared at the minute.”
The restaurant was put on lockdown after a manager went to the nearby cinema, where staff confirmed the situation, she added.
Nuneaton MP Marcus Jones told Sky News: “It is a situation where I think we need to let the police do their job and I think this is an extremely concerning situation.
“But I have every confidence that Warwickshire Police are capable and are able to deal with what looks like a very difficult situation.”
Carl Lenton was sitting with his family at a table by the window in Frankie and Benny’s when the incident began.
He told Sky News: “The manager from Frankie and Benny’s came round and said we were in lockdown and we have got to stay in and there had been an incident at the bowling alley, a man over there with a gun.
“There were police cars arriving, there was a helicopter, police dogs, armed police stood all around the bowling alley, around the outside of it. It was quite scary at times.”
West Midlands Ambulance Service said it was called to the incident at 3.40pm and sent an ambulance, two paramedic officers, the Hazardous Area Response Team, and an emergency planning manager to the scene.
It tweeted: “There are no casualties at present.”
Children were evacuated from the nearby Bermuda Adventure Soft Play World, Megan Westwood, who was there with a friend, said.
She told BBC News: “One of the staff told us to get away from the windows because there was a man outside with a knife. As time went on we were later told that he actually had a gun and they barricaded the doors, kept us all away from the windows, and then we were told that he had hostages in the bowling alley next to us.”
They were evacuated by the back door into the Holiday Inn Express hotel, which she said was “full of children at the minute”.