The scene of The Galleria Outlet Centre in Hatfield where a 'suspect suitcase' sparked a bomb scare Twitter / Rob Bartlett / @robbartlett75

A Hertfordshire shopping centre has been evacuated this afternoon after a "suspect suitcase" was found abandoned inside. On Saturday, 30 July, at around 11.30am police have said a package was spotted at The Galleria Outlet Centre in Hatfield sparking a bomb scare.

The shopping centre, which sits on the A1(M), was immediately attended by officers and set up a cordon around the suspicious object. The cordon was then expanded, and as a result the retail centre was evacuated with roads around the immediate vicinity closed to traffic.

The A1(M) remains open as a Hertfordshire police disposal team investigate the suitcase.

A spokesman for the force said: "Police received a report of an abandoned suitcase at the Galleria shopping centre in Hatfield at around 11.30am today. Officers attended immediately and set up cordon around the object.

"This cordon has been expanded, and as a result the building was evacuated and roads in its immediate vicinity closed. An Explosive Ordinance Disposal team are in attendance and are dealing with the suitcase."

One shopper said on Twitter: "Wow only if you can see what's going on at the Galleria in Hatfield now. Bomb disposal team, police cars and staff and customers evacuated."

Another said: "Just drove to Hatfield galleria. Avoid as it has been evacuated. Police in attendance with bomb disposal."

A video uploaded to the microblogging site by one shopper which shows pedestrians leaving the scene as police vehicles arrive.