AN ARMED robber raided a Leigh newsagents with a knife leaving a shop assistant terrified.

The knifeman threatened the shopworker at Big News, London Road, with a 12-inch blade while wearing a motorcycle helmet.

Bosses closed the store following the raid.

The incident forced the shop bosses to close for the rest of the evening.

Owner Imran Saleemi said: “I got a call at about 7.46pm from one of the managers and he told me the shop has been robbed.

“I told him to call 999. The guy working at the time was so shaken up and very frightened.

“He has never experienced anything like this before.

“The man came into the store and swore at the worker and demanded he handed over the cash.

“I am feeling very insecure and I am concerned as this is my place of work and these things are happening here.

“I feel as if nothing is safe any more.”

Mr Saleemi said he took the decision to close the shop for the rest of the day as he was concerned about leaving the worker alone in the store following the incident.

He said it took the man less than 60 seconds which leads him to believe the man knew what he was doing and had done this sort of thing before.

CCTV footage and images released show the man entering the store wearing a crash helmet and then quickly taking a knife out and the worker handing over the cash.

The shop owner said the man was riding a moped.

A spokesman for Essex Police said: “A man went into Big News, in London Road at around 7.45pm on Tuesday armed with a knife. He demanded money from a member of staff and made off on a motorbike.

“The man is described as being white, 5ft 10ins tall, of medium build, in his mid-30s to mid-40s, and wearing blue jeans, a black and white jacket Adidas jacket with stripes on the shoulders, a black helmet with a clear visor, black trainers and Nike gloves.

He had a green coloured tattoo on the side of his neck.”

Call 101 quoting the crime reference number 42/8000/19 with information.