Staff at a Southampton pub were threatened by a gang of robbers armed with knives over the bank holiday weekend.

The gang of at least four were described by police as wearing balaclavas and dark clothing as they burst into the Walnut Tree pub via a rear door.

Hampshire police are now appealing for witnesses and information following the incident which happened at around midnight on Sunday at the pub in Adanac Drive, Nursling.

The suspects threatened members of staff before accessing a safe on the premises. before going on to steal a quantity of cash and making off in the direction of Frogmore Lane and Redbridge Lane.

Acting Detective Chief Inspector Colin White said: “The suspects carried off four plastic till trays and a metal cash tin. If you come across anything like this in the vicinity, please get in touch.

“We believe this to be a targeted incident. We would appeal to anyone who may have seen anything suspicious leading up to and following this crime to get in contact.

“No-one was injured during the incident but the members of staff involved were understandably shocked and extremely distressed by what happened.”

Following the incident part of the pub was sealed off on Monday morning while police undertook investigations

A number of police vehicles were seen in the carpark while a police sniffer dog unit searched the area near the pub.

Police are urging anyone who saw anything suspicious in the vicinity or anyone with information about the crime to ring 101, quoting reference 44190155145.

The armed robbery comes not long after another similar incident in Nursling at the end of March.

One man entered a Co-op supermarket on Nursling Street and threatened a member of staff with a knife. However, the till had been emptied before the robbery so the man left the scene empty-handed.