RESIDENTS were evacuated and a street was closed as police swooped on a suspected burglar who refused to climb down from the top of a house.

Police were called to reports of suspicious activity in Downey Close, Basildon, at about 9.40am on Saturday.

They found the man, a 23-year-old from Basildon, had climbed up onto a roof and refused to come down.

Eight shocked residents were evacuated as police cordoned off the close and a section of nearby Church Street while negotiators were called in to talk the man down. By 12.20pm he had been persuaded to come down and was arrested on suspicion of burglary.