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Post Office reopens after huge explosion; crooks blew up business as they ransacked cash machine.

Byline: ANDREW ROBINSON andrew.robinson@reachplc.com @Andrew_Examiner

A POST Office blown apart by an explosion four months ago is due to reopen following extensive repairs.

New Mill Post Office was badly damaged when criminals pumped gas into the ATM in the early hours of May 3 and blew it up.

Business manager Tom Howard said the subsequent explosion "obliterated" the Post Office and newsagent and also left the pharmacy unit badly damaged.

"The Post Office was blown to smithereens," he said.

"The newsagent was only closed for a day - the day it happened - and was soon back up and running."

But the badly-damaged Post Office needed rebuilding and will reopen on Monday, September 16 at 9am.

Mr Howard: "The front of the shop needed fully rebuilding, with new windows and a new floor."

It is understood that the thieves escaped with around PS20,000 in cash from the ATM after the explosion blew the machine apart.

The new-look Post Office will not be fitted with a cash machine but customers will be able to get money over the counter.

People living as far away as Scholes reported hearing the loud bang. Debris from the blast was left strewn across Huddersfield Road and residents were woken by the noise.

Mr Howard thanked customers for staying loyal to the businesses affected by the attack. He also thanked staff members including Ruth Graham, Gwyneth Francis, Mel Vernon and Liam Pickford.

He said: "I also want to thank Ivar Smethurst who was the person from the Post Office who helped massively both on the day of the robbery and the following months, getting everything back in order."

He added: "Customers have been amazing during this extremely difficult time."

Local children's author Sarah Morrell is due to attend the re-opening ceremony.

A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said investigations into the incident were continuing. No arrests have been made.

CAPTION(S):

New Mill Post Office was 'blown to smithereens' following the ATM gas blast attack in May this year

Tom Howard, business manager of New Mill Post Office, in the refurbished shop

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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Sep 11, 2019
Words:348
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