Staff injured in store robbery

POLICE are today investigating an attempted robbery at an Ipswich store which left a member of staff requiring hospital treatment for a facial injury.Two people are believed to have entered the Argos Extra store on the Suffolk Retail Park in London Road as staff opened the store at about 6.

POLICE are today investigating an attempted robbery at an Ipswich store which left a member of staff requiring hospital treatment for a facial injury.

Two people are believed to have entered the Argos Extra store on the Suffolk Retail Park in London Road as staff opened the store at about 6.30am.

The pair demanded cash but left with nothing.

The member of staff suffered what police described as a minor facial injury during the incident.

Ambulance officers were called and the staff member was taken to Ipswich Hospital for treatment.

The store was closed indefinitely today, with customers being advised that the doors would remain shut until further notice.

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Staff were reporting for work as normal, although none wanted to comment on the incident.

However, An Argos spokesman said: “Argos can confirm there was an attempted robbery early this morning at its store in Suffolk Retail Park.

“We take this situation very seriously and we are currently working with the police to assist with their enquiries.

“As this is a police matter we can give no further comment at this time.”

Just over a year ago, the Halfords store next door to Argos Extra was struck by armed robbers. A member of staff was tied up while two men took cash from the safe.

Today, traders in the retail park spoke of their shock at the latest robbery.

And they revealed that there have been other incidents recently which have given them cause for concern.

Matt Lipscombe, deputy manager of shoe store Brantano, said: “We do get people hanging around in the evening and it is becoming a little more of a problem.

“Halfords had an armed robbery last year so bearing that in mind today's robbery at Argos is more worrying.

“You get the occasional thefts here but we have not been targeted with such severity as this.

“Because all the traders are quite closely knit in this park this is a real shock. We'll certainly be keeping our eyes peeled.”

A spokesman for Dunelm Mill said: “We have had some break-ins lately and we have a few concerns about the area.

“Some of our colleagues next door have had problems recently.

“All sorts of things go on in the evening.”

Although the management at Halfords were not available for comment on the robbery, staff said they were surprised at the incident.

One worker said: “We came to work and saw the police outside.

“It happened before we got here, but it's not very nice.”

Suffolk Police were urging anyone who saw anything unusual in the area to contact them immediately dialling 999.

Other recent robberies in Suffolk stores

July 25 - There was an armed robbery on Foxhall Road, Ipswich, when two shopkeepers at the Co op store were believed to have been held at gunpoint by two balaclava-clad men as they opened for the morning.

May 10 - There was an armed robbery at the Woolwich Building Society in Bury St Edmunds where a small amount of cash was taken but no one was hurt.

January 30 - A robber armed with a knife left two McColl's post office staff in Trimley St Martin badly shaken after demanding money.

June 7, 2005 - There was an armed robbery at Halfords on the Suffolk Retail Park, right next door to the Argos store where the attempted robbery took place today.

On that occasion a member of staff was apparently tied up while two men took cash from the safe.

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