A large department store in Swindon’s town centre was evacuated and closed to the public today – after a fox fell through a ceiling panel.

House of Fraser’s furriest customer gained access via the store room overnight, and ended up in the main shop after falling through a ceiling panel.

It was later seen walking around the shop on CCTV, and set alarms off throughout the building. When staff began to arrive at around 10.30am, they were unable to find the fox, so the store opened as usual.

But it was only a small amount of time before the vixen was spotted and the store was closed, with staff telling customers it was a “matter of safety”.

The Oak and Furrows Wildlife Rescue Centre were called to safely remove the animal, which is well, and being looked after for the night.

Chrissy Ball, from Oak and Furrows, said of the fox: “It is here with us now.

“It is an adult female; she looks very fit, well and healthy, but obviously being in House of Fraser is not where she wants to be.

“We didn’t want to release her into the centre of Swindon in the middle of the day.

“It was a call from staff [which alerted them], at the time they said the fox had been seen in their store room. But it then passed into the store itself.

“The fox hid itself away in a rack of jeans in the corner.”