TWO robbers used a sledge-hammer to smash the security glass of a Little Sutton bank, leaving two women cashiers so traumatised they needed hospital treatment.
Just after 11.20am last Friday a stolen silver Vauxhall Cavalier mounted the kerb on Chester Road and drove at speed along the pavement before screeching to a halt outside Jones Chapman estate agents.
Detective Sergeant Martin Sanna, of Ellesmere Port police, said two masked men, one armed with a handgun and the other with a long-handled sledge hammer, leapt from the vehicle and entered the premises, which also contains a small branch of the Halifax bank.
He said: "Once inside the man with the sledge-hammer smashed his way through the security glass while the second offender threatened the two women workers with the gun. Having demolished the screen, the man jumped over the counter and stole an amount of cash.
"The offenders left in the stolen car which made off towards Childer Thornton, where it was later found abandonded. I have never seen witnesses as traumatised as the two women cashiers were."
He added: "Although they were not physically harmed they were in such shock they had to go to hospital and it will take some time before they get over what happened to them."
Little Sutton was very busy at the time of the robbery and Sgt Sanna says witnesses should come forward as soon as possible.
He said: "The offender with the sledge-hammer is described as 5ft 8ins tall, of medium or proportional build and dressed in a light coloured, possibly yellow or cream, jacket and white trainers. He, like the other two offenders wore a black balaclava which covered his face.
"The man with the handgun wore a black top, black jeans and white trainers. We have very little description of the driver of the stolen Cavalier other than the balaclava."
He added: "I would appeal to anyone who saw the Cavalier arrive outside the agency from the direction of Chester or who might have walked past while the robbery was taking place.
"It seems to be only a matter of luck that someone wasn't hurt as the Cavalier, which was stolen from Elton the day before, was driven at speed along the pavement for about 30 metres. When it left the scene, it was weaving in and out of traffic."
Witnesses should call CID on 01244 613133.