Police are urging the people of a Norfolk town to ignore pranksters dressed as clowns who have scared a number of residents.

Officers said there had been at least two incidents of people dressed up in clown costume startling people around the King's Lynn area.

One joker was described as being in full clown outfit of red suit and red hair. The following day, two people were seen wearing "Halloween-type" clown masks near the Fairstead skatepark.

In both cases, people reported being "alarmed" by the clowns, who may have modelled themselves on the Northampton Clown, who terrorised local residents for days in full clown make-up and costume.

Supt Carl Edwards of King's Lynn and West Norfolk Police said the clowns were not breaking any laws.

He said: "Nobody has been assaulted and it appears that the people involved are waiting for a passerby to be startled by their appearance and run away, and then the clown runs after them for a short distance.

"We know there has been a lot of gossip and conversations about this on social media channels, not just in Norfolk, and it is important to gain a perspective on these incidents. We appreciate this can worry people, especially the young or elderly. The most effective way to behave if you are to see someone dressed up is to give no reaction - because that's what they are after.

"We will be out in the areas where reports have been made to attempt to find those responsible and offer them strong words of advice."

After the Northampton Clown became famous around the world, there were similar sightings of scary clowns in Burnley, Scunthorpe, Mansfield and Carrickfergus, Northern Ireland.