A language school in Edinburgh, England has been sealed off after suspected radioactive packages were found inside.

Emergency services have placed a cordon around the Regent Language Training School after the discovery of three small packages that may contain radioactive material.

Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service said they were called to the incident at around 7 p.m. and have launched a joint operation with police.

Eight fire engines and 28 fire service personnel were attending the emergency in the city's Chester Street.

An inner cordon and an outer cordon were thrown up around the building, and radiation emergency procedures were being followed, a fire service spokesman said.

The alarm was raised when the packages were found inside a cupboard being cleaned.

Marking on them indicated they contained radioactive materials.

A fire service spokesman said he thought they had been there some time. There is no-one in the building, and no properties in the area have been evacuated.

Group manager Jim Fraser of Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service said: "There are three small packages although we are uncertain at this time whether they contain a radioactive source for definite.

"We do know they had been for a considerable time."

As is standard in the circumstances, he said, the fire service and police had launched a procedure called National Arrangements for Incidents Involving Radiation.

Radiation experts were at the scene with monitoring equipment to test the packages, Fraser said.

He did not know how many people were in the building when the packages were found.