Man held after 16-hour armed siege

An armed siege in a seaside town has come to an end after police arrested a man on suspicion of making threats to kill.

The 52-year-old, arrested at a house in Elizabeth Road, Southend, has been taken to hospital for a check-up.

An Essex Police spokesman said that two local women, aged 36 and 51, have also been arrested on suspicion of possession of firearms.

He said officers are conducting a search of the home in Elizabeth Road.

Overnight two women left the house while negotiations with the man continued.

The occupant was due to be arrested yesterday, but when officers arrived at 12.25pm he claimed to have a weapon.

Armed officers surrounded the house and spent more than 16 hours negotiating with the man.

Elizabeth Road and Eastern Esplanade - which runs along the seafront - were cordoned off.

A police spokesman said: "Officers were threatened by a man who said he was armed. The roads were cordoned off to ensure public safety."