Police are investigating two attempted robberies at separate East Lancashire bookmakers on Wednesday evening.
Shortly after 6-30pm last night, two men entered William Hill bookmakers in Railway Street in Brierfield.
Police say one of the men was armed with a baseball bat and made his way to the counter, demanding money from the cashier. Both of the men then tried to gain entry to a locked side door before fleeing empty handed.
The man with the baseball bat is described as white, slim build, approximately 6ft. tall and aged in his twenties. He was described as wearing a grey zip up jacket, black trousers and a balaclava.
The second man is described as approximately 5ft. 8in. and was wearing a grey hoody with the hood up and black bottoms.
A short time later at approximately 8pm, two men entered Coral Bookmakers in Railway Road in Blackburn, police said, where similarly, one of the men who was armed with a baseball bat, approached the cashiers and made demands for money.
However, the cashiers were able to hit the panic button and locked themselves in a room directly behind the counter and the men made off from the till area without cash having been disturbed.
DI Eric Halford, of East CID, said: “This must have been extremely frightening for the cashiers involved. Thankfully no one was hurt and the men left empty handed on both occasions.
“An investigation to identify the offenders is underway and enquiries are ongoing to establish whether the two incidents are linked.
“I would appeal to anyone with any information about either incident to contact us as soon as possible.”
Anyone with information can contact police on 101 quoting crime reference EG1503311.
Alternatively, Crimestoppers can be called anonymously on 0800 555111 or contacted online at Crimestoppers-uk.org.