Harold Hill suspicious package: Cashier given threatening note and told to hand over money
PUBLISHED: 11:47 31 December 2018 | UPDATED: 11:47 31 December 2018
Shops in Farnham Road were closed this morning after a suspicious package was reported at the Santander bank.
Police bomb squads were called to a Harold Hill bank after a cashier was given a threatening note that said if she didn’t hand over money from the till she wouldn’t see her family again.
Officers were called to Farnham Road at around 9.36 this morning (Monday, December 31) to reports of a suspicious package in the Santander branch.
Branch manager Danny Dobson told the Recorder that himself and four other members of staff were evacuated from the store, after one cashier was handed a note and a suspicious flashing package was slid under the counter.
He said: “A man came into the branch and came straight up to the till and he had a package in his hand.
“He passed a note to the cashier that said ‘If you want to see the new year and your family again hand over the money’.
“They then pressed the panic button and the shutters came down.
“Everyone is safe now and that is all that matters.
“Police have just taken down the cordon now and we can go back in.
“It’s scary, but I’m pleased it’s all over now.”
A police cordon was put in place all along Farnham Road and shops, cafes and businesses were told to leave.
Councillor Jan Sargent was on her way to the library when she saw police and had to turn around.
She said Farnham Road was “eerily quiet” and that the cordon at first had only been up to the Post Office, but was extended about 20 minutes later.
At around 11am the cordon was lifted and people were allowed to return to the shops.
No arrests have been made.