Thieves stole tens of thousands of pounds after setting off a gas explosion in a cashpoint at a branch of Barclays Bank in Bury St Edmunds.
Suffolk Police were called by a member of the public at 3.35am today to reports of a loud bang and an alarm ringing at the branch, in Tollgate Lane.
A spokesman said it appears the front of the cash machine was subjected to a small gas explosion.
The thieves then broke into the building and stole a ‘significant amount of cash’ from the machine before driving off in what was described as a dark-coloured estate car.
A woman who lives in Norman Road, opposite the bank, said: “I think it was around 3am and my husband was up turning the boiler off when we heard this big bang.
“It sounded like a balloon bursting really loudly or something crashing into something. My dad heard it too and he lives all the way down Phillip Road.
“We have lorries coming past all the time so I thought it was a lorry crash or something. Then we saw all these police cars this morning.”
A Barclays spokesperson said the attack on the cash machine at the Tollgate Lane branch ‘caused extensive damage’ to the building and engineers were called to assess the extent of the damage.
The branch reopened today but the cashpoint is still out of order. The spokesman added: “We will get this working as soon as possible.”
Any witnesses, or anyone with information about this incident, are asked to contact Bury St Edmunds CID on 101 quoting reference 37/12579/15, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.