"We just wanted to get the children safe" - Shoppers tell of terrifying moment armed robbers raided Leeds jewellers

SHOPPERS fled in fear as two masked men armed with an axe and hammer smashed their way through a jeweller's shop window in a busy Leeds shopping centre.

The raiders escaped with a haul of expensive watches after the raid at Browns Family Jewellers and Pawnbrokers in Crossgates Shopping Centre just after 11am today (Mon May 15).

Tony Jackson, manager of Timpson shoe repairs shop in the Austhorpe Road centre, said: “I heard a loud noise and I looked out and I could see them smashing the window.

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“Everybody was running around, scared. There were a few kids around so everyone was concerned about the kids more than anything.”

Lisa Waterworth, manager of the Mirage Electronic Cigarette shop, said: “I heard an almighty bang and loads of noise and people running. A woman came running in with a pushchair asking me to keep her child safe while she went to get her other child who was near the jewellers. She was really upset and was wanting to get her children to safety.”