ROBBERS attacked staff at a Belbroughton newsagents before escaping with cash and cigarettes.

Two male members of staff were cleaning and cashing up at McColl’s, High Street, last night (Wednesday) when four men, with their faces covered, burst through the back door.

One of the staff members was grabbed and threatened with a bottle and the other was punched in the face during the incident that took place between 10pm and 10.30pm.

They were forced to open a safe and the raiders took cash from it along with cigarettes from a display behind the till.

A neck chain was also stolen from one of the store workers, who were pushed into a toilet and ordered to stay there, while the robbers escaped the way they had come in.

Officers from West Mercia Police were at the scene today (Thursday), trying to establish exactly how much was stolen and are appealing for witnesses to come forward as they hunt for the gang.

Detective Sergeant Natalie Martin, of North Worcestershire CID, said: “The staff were checked over by an ambulance crew and apart from some bruising they were not injured. However they were both clearly shaken up by what happened.

“The robbers indicated they were armed but no weapons were actually seen. They may have parked off an alleyway at the back of the store or possibly on the car park of the Ye Olde Horseshoe Inn, which is also near the back of the premises."

She continued: "If you think you might have seen these men or the vehicle they were using in High Street or in and around Nash Street then we would very much like to hear from you as a matter of urgency.

"Any detail, no matter how small, could be useful to our investigation and it’s important we catch these men as soon as possible.”

Reassurance patrols are being carried out by the Safer Neighbourhood Team and extra attention will be given by officers to other shops and businesses in the area.

Anyone with information should contact Det Sgt Martin at North Worcestershire CID on the non-emergency number 101, quoting the incident reference 713-S-010214.

Details may also be passed on anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.