Piccadilly Gardens shut in 'convict' big wheel protest

Big wheel protester in Piccadilly Gardens Manchester Image copyright Byron Armitt
Image caption Police said the 49-year-old man came down before 22:00 BST and was arrested

The big wheel in Manchester city centre was closed after a man climbed up it in an apparent protest.

The BBC understands the man was Domenyk Noonan, who was released from prison on licence after being jailed for firearms offences in 2005.

A number of people who were trapped on the wheel in Piccadilly Gardens at about 15:30 BST were released, police said.

Police said the 49-year-old man came down before 22:00 BST and was arrested.

Greater Manchester Police said the man was held on suspicion of aggravated trespass.

'Safe conclusion'

Noonan was jailed in 2005 after a revolver and ammunition were found under the bonnet of his car when he was stopped by police in Darlington.

Earlier that year, his brother Desmond "Dessy" Noonan was interviewed for a television documentary and bragged about having "more guns than the police".

A few days later he was stabbed to death on a street in south Manchester.

In a statement, Greater Manchester Police said: "We were called at around 3.30pm today to reports a man had climbed up the big wheel.

"A 49-year-old man came down shortly before 10pm and was arrested on suspicion of aggravated trespass.

"The public is thanked for their patience while the incident was brought to a safe conclusion."

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