AN armed robber who threatened a post office worker with a hammer during a botched raid, fled after the quick-thinking staff member hit the panic alarm.

Dorset Police have since launched an attempted robbery investigation and released CCTV images of the suspect.

Detectives say the man entered the post office at Tuckton Road, Bournemouth, around 6.50am on Sunday, January 26.

With his features obscured by a hood, scarf and a pair of sunglasses, the robber pulled out a hammer and ordered a male member of staff to put money in a bag.

But the staff member pressed a panic alarm instead – prompting the hammer thug to turn and run away without any cash.

On his way out of the post office, the robber did steal a four-pack of beer.

In the aftermath a police search was carried out in the surrounding area but the man was not located.

Detective Constable Aimee Garner, of Bournemouth CID, said: "We are continuing to make enquiries to identify the man responsible for this offence and have obtained CCTV images of the suspect.

"I appreciate his face is covered but I am hoping someone may be able to recognise him from his general build and the clothing he is wearing.

"I would also like to hear from anyone who may have witnessed a man dressed in similar clothing in the area around the time of the incident."

Investigators say the suspect ran away from the store along Tuckton Road, in the direction of Iford Lane.

DC Garner said: "Additionally, I would urge anyone with home CCTV in the area or who was driving in the vicinity and has dashcam to check their footage."

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police via or by calling 101, quoting occurrence number 55200012883.