BRIDPORT'S South Street has reopened to traffic after Dorset Fire and Rescue emergency response dealt with an incident as Christmas lights strung across the street were pulling on a building and believed to be making it unsafe.

The pavement area around the building remains cordoned off.

Police had sealed off South Street for several hours to traffic and pedestrians.

Town clerk Bob Gillis said the string of lights across South Street needed to be made safe.

People were urged to clear the streets and not to leave adjacent buildings while the emergency services assessed the situation.

Surveyor Andrew Butler, whose offices are in the affected building at the junction with Gundry Lane, said that they had noticed the problem earlier this afternoon.

"Because of the high winds, the string of lights which is attached to the building, started to pull away the skin of the building.

"We are working on normally, but the danger is that another gust of wind could pull down pieces of masonry."

Bridport Town Surveyor Daryl Chambers said a cherry-picker was awaited in order to take down the lights and scaffolding would be needed to assess the building.