Updated: A SECURITY guard needed hospital treatment after he was robbed by masked men outside a York bank.

The attack happened outside the Lloyds TSB branch in Front Street, Acomb, when an employee of G4S Cash Solutions was set upon by a number of men wearing balaclavas as he left the bank.

Local workers said the guard was wrestled to the ground at about 10.10am yesterday, before the robbers escaped with a cash box in a black car.

A customer service advisor at the Halifax bank across the street from Lloyds TSB, said a female customer told her she was “shaken up” after witnessing the robbery.

The Halifax employee said: “She said a security man had been ‘taken down’ by three guys.

“I didn’t see how he’d been injured, but she said they’d jumped on him and taken him down, then escaped in a car.”

Police officers checked CCTV in the area, including the cameras at the Halifax.

The bank worker said: “I saw him being taken in the ambulance. He was walking unattended but limping.

“It’s such a great shame that something like this has to happen. It’s upsetting.”

An employee at nearby Rayners Opticians said: “It’s a shame. In the 15 years I’ve worked here, it’s never happened before. It’s a bit of a shock, I just hope the guard is all right.”

A spokeswoman for G4S would not confirm how much money was in the cash box, but said: “Thankfully our employee suffered only minor injuries as a result of a kick to his knee.

“Following the attack, he was transported to York Hospital to receive further treatment.”

Former York councillor and Acomb resident Liz Edge said she was unable to attend an appointment at Lloyds as it was cordoned off by police.

A member of staff at the nearby Morrisons supermarket told her the security guard had visited the store first to collect money, and had been followed by the robbers to the bank. A North Yorkshire Police spokesman said the guard was discharged from hospital yesterday afternoon.

He said they could not confirm whether a weapon had been used in the attack, but the robbers were believed to be heading towards Carr Lane as they made off. Detective Sergeant Mandy Grundy, of York CID, said: “Clearly we need to identify who was responsible for this incident as soon as possible.

“There will have been numerous people on Front Street at the time of the robbery and I urge anyone who witnessed the incident or knows who the suspects are to contact the police or Crimestoppers as soon as they can.”

Anyone who can help officers with their inquiries is urged to contact York CID on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.