Peterborough postmaster’s terror as men raid branch

Exterior of Longthorpe Post Office after qrmed raid. EMN-190103-165304009
Exterior of Longthorpe Post Office after qrmed raid. EMN-190103-165304009

A brave postmaster slammed the door on armed robbers, preventing the men from emptying a safe.

Dad of three Mohammad Arif - better known to customers at Longthorpe Post Office as Addy - was threatened during the terrifying raid as he locked the shop up on Wednesday, February 27.

Because of Addy’s courageous efforts, the robbers got away with less than half the cash in the safe. Brave Addy was back behind the counter at the shop connected to the post office the following day.

Addy (35) said the raid was started just after 5.30pm. He said: “I had just set the alarms, and opened the back door when one man came in carrying a knife. I was paralysed with fear. He was telling me what to do, and I was just doing it. You just think about what the worst case scenario could be.”

While one of the men stood guard at the door, the other, who was carrying the knife, ordered Addy to switch off the alarm, and take him to the safe.

Addy said: “The safe is on a time lock, so I was hoping it would open. I didn’t know what the man would do if it didn’t open. The safe did open, and he made me move back - I wasn’t going to fight with him. I could only see his back, but he didn’t have a bag.

“He walked out from behind the counter, and more than half the money was left in the safe - I think he couldn’t carry any more. When he did, I pushed the door (of the counter) shut, locked it and hit the panic button.

“I was worried the door would not shut properly - and there is a gap at the bottom of the door. I worried what would happen if he had a gun and could shoot under the door.”

When officers turned up, Addy learnt the raiders had also stripped the CCTV from the building as they fled.

Addy said he was unable to see either of the men - one man was wearing a hoodie and kept his back to Addy, while the other covered his face and hands He said the knife had a blade about six inches long.

While the Post Office remained closed the day after the robbery, the shop connected to the branch was open.

Addy said: “I started at the Post Office in 2015, and always knew something like this could happen.

“The customers, community, Post Office staff, and my friends and family have all been fantastic. They’ve really helped me get through this.”

Anyone with information should call Cambridgeshire police on 101.