Petrol station staff threatened with axe in 'brutal' armed robbery

The robbers in the shop
The robbers in the shop
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Four masked men smashed into a petrol station with an axe during a robbery.

They smashed through glass doors and threatened staff with the axe at Co-op, which is attached to a petrol station, on Manchester Road, Astley.

A CCTV image from the robbery

A CCTV image from the robbery

The men stole cash and cigarettes, before driving off in a white Audi towards Hough Lane.

The car - which had been reported stolen from Tyldesley on Thursday, November 16 and had false plates - was later recovered on Whitehead Lane in Astley.

Nobody was injured.

Police have now released CCTV images of the incident, which happened at around 10.40pm on Tuesday, December 5.

The robbers smashed through the glass doors

The robbers smashed through the glass doors

Det Sgt Alison Witkiewicz said: “This was a brutal and targeted attack that has left the employees extremely shaken.

“These men were armed and using a stolen car - the consequences of their actions could have been much worse and they need to be held accountable for their actions.

“I am appealing to anyone who recognises anything in the pictures that might help our investigation to please get in touch.

“I would also appeal to anyone who has any information relating to this incident to please contact police.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101, quoting reference 2422 of December 5, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.