23/11/2012 10:27 GMT | Updated 23/11/2012 10:28 GMT

Naked Man On Whitehall Prince George Statue Detained Under Mental Health Act

A man who shocked bystanders by straddling a statue in central London whilst naked has been detained under the Mental Health Act.

The man was seen in a variety of poses on the statue of Prince George, the Duke of Cambridge, in Whitehall, central London, at times balancing precariously on the Duke's head.

He was coaxed down after spending around three hours atop the statue, and put into the back of a police van.

"He came down at 2:45pm and he's been detained under the Mental Health Act," A Metropolitan police spokesperson told The Huffington Post UK.

naked man whitehall statue

The man brought Whitehall to a stand still for three hours

Whitehall runs from Trafalgar Square to Parliament and is the site of many government departments including the Ministry of Defence and connects with Downing Street.

A police officer at the scene told The Huffington Post UK that the man climbed up the statue fully clothed, then proceeded to take them off.

A bystander said: "I can't believe they've cordoned off the whole street for one naked man, it's ridiculous!".

The man could be seen adopting a variety of poses on the statue, which is of Prince George, the Duke of Cambridge.

Officers were called at around midday to reports that someone had clambered on to the statue, and they believed he might have a knife.

Onlookers said he was clothed before he climbed to the top of the statue.

A 100-metre stretch of Whitehall was cordoned off as emergency services tried to persuade him to come down.

Whitehall runs from Trafalgar Square and is where the Ministry of Defence is situated.

David Lee, a civil servant who works nearby, said he had watched the naked man for more than an hour.

"We saw him dismount the horse, then he sort of disappeared for a bit, then I assume he went into the police van," Mr Lee said.

"It's amazing that someone can cause this much disruption."