A tanning salon worker was left terrified when an armed thug held a screwdriver to her throat and demanded money.
The woman, in her 60s, was working alone at The Grooming Room, on Dickson Road, when a man burst in and told her there were five men waiting outside to ‘harm’ her if she screamed.
Now salon boss Mark Massey – who is offering a £500 reward for information in a bid to bring the robber to justice –has been forced to boost security at his Blackpool business.
The 49-year-old vowed to install CCTV and a buzzer on the door to protect his staff from a repeat of the ordeal.
He told The Gazette: “He had a scarf over his face and he reached over the counter and held the screwdriver up to her throat. I don’t know what he was thinking.”
Police are hunting the man, who fled with £250.
The robber struck at 6.20pm on Friday after a busy day for the beauty shop.
The man, who wore a scarf to obscure his face, brandished the screwdriver and demanded cash, warning the lone store worker there were others waiting in a car outside should she raise the alarm.
Mark, 49, said: “Friday is a big day for us, lots of customers wanting to look good for the weekend.
“There was nobody in at the time, just one member of staff.
“She was doing a few jobs when this guy came through the door.
“He had a scarf over his face and he reached over the counter and held the screwdriver up to her throat.
“He said ‘don’t scream or you’ll be harmed’.
“Then he told her there were five other men in a car outside who would come in if she made any noise.
“He’s asked for the contents of the till.
“Then he’s asked for the money from the safe.
“I don’t know what he was thinking, it’s a tanning shop, not a supermarket.”
Mark, who has had the store for more than a decade, said the woman, in her 60s, had been shaken by the ordeal and wants to make sure her assailant is brought to justice.
And in the aftermath of the raid he’s putting in new security measures at the Dickson Road store.
He said: He might have been caught on CCTV at the Co-op as he’s made his escape.
“He’s taken the coins as well as the notes so he must have been weighed down!
“My employee has done the right thing, she’s complied and made sure she hasn’t been hurt.
“You just don’t know if there were other men waiting.
“We’re going to have CCTV fitted now and we’ll get a buzzer on the door so people have to be let into the shop.
“It’s sad because you want to be open, but we don’t want this to happen again.
“I’m willing to offer a reward of £500 for any information which leads to a prosecution. If you have information, please, contact the police.”
Around £250 was taken in the raid. Police said the offender was between 5ft 10ins and 6ft 2ins tall and was wearing grey clothing including a grey scarf.
Anyone with information should call 1010 quoting reference WD1700241