TWO security guards were left terrified after thieves armed with an axe and a knife stole money from a cash machine outside a supermarket in Wigan.
Two masked men, said to be armed with a knife and an axe, threatened the two men outside Morrisons, in Shuttle Street, Tyldesley between 9.40am and 10.10am on Tuesday.
The thieves then stole two cash cassettes, each containing a significant amount of money, and fled.
The duo got into a grey Saab and drove off at speed. The car was later found abandoned in Barton Street, Tyldesley.
No injuries were reported but the security guards, who were transfering money into the cash machine at the store, were badly shaken up after their ordeal.
Police are now appealing to anyone who either witnessed the robbery, or has information to come forward.
The man with the knife had dark hair, dark eyes and was about 5ft 8ins tall. He was said to be of quite a big build and was wearing black clothing and a balaclava.
The other man was about the same height and also wearing dark clothing. He was carrying the axe.
DS Graham Clare today appealed for anyone who witnessed the incident or spotted something suspicious in the area around the store, to come forward.
He said: “The mere threat of violence has caused the security guards a lot of distress and they had no idea whether or not they would be attacked with either a knife or an axe.
“Clearly, the culprits are dangerous men and we are doing everything we can to identify them. I would appeal to anyone with information to come forward, particularly anyone who saw the car and males on the supermarket car park, or the car being abandoned in Barton Street. Your information could be crucial.
“These sorts of violent crimes affect our whole community so please, if you know anything, do speak to us.”
Greater Manchester Police, through Vanguard, works closely with the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) and other partner agencies to target, deter and disrupt the activities of armed robbers.
Initiatives to reduce cash-in-transit robberies have already been very successful across the North West in jailing a number of offenders.
Anyone with information should call police on 0161 856 7726 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.