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Armed robbers lay in wait for bank staff during terrifying raid

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Police have revealed how armed robbers lay in wait for bank staff before threatening them and making off with a “substantial” haul.

Two balaclava-clad men broke into the Hathersage branch of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) early last Thursday morning and pounced on the workers.

The robbers, brandishing a silver handgun and a crowbar, threatened the employees – then coolly strolled off with a “substantial” amount of money in a holdall.

Inspector Richard Smith, of Derbyshire police, said: “This is a very serious crime and one that is very rare in a small village like Hathersage. The robbery has left staff terrified and we are hoping that the public can help us with our investigation.”

Detectives have released the above CCTV footage of two men they would like to speak to. Meanwhile, the British Bank Association is offering a £15,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the offenders.

Police said the robbers broke into the Main Road bank through the roof at about 6.20am then left via the main entrance at 9.05am.

One shocked villager, who did not want to be named, said: “You don’t expect this type of thing to happen in Hathersage. I hope they catch those responsible.”

The bank reopened on Tuesday after being closed since the crime. An RBS spokesman said: “The wellbeing of our staff is of the utmost importance at this time and we’re doing everything we can to support them. Given the circumstances staff don’t want to speak to the press.”

The offenders are described as white, in their early 40s, about 5ft 11in tall and wearing dark hooded tops, balaclavas, gloves and boots.

A Derbyshire police spokesman said: “Some of the stolen money was protected by a security device which would have released red dye when activated.

“We’d like the public to contact us if they saw anyone with red dye on them at any point.

“Also if shop owners or banks have had anyone trying to purchase items with or deposit money stained with red dye they are asked to contact officers. Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen anyone acting suspiciously in the area on Thursday morning to call us on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

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