A post office in South Norwood was reportedly robbed at gunpoint this morning.
The shop in Selhurst Road, near Norwood Junction, was raided as it opened at around 8.20am.
It is understood the robber lurked in a nearby phone box to await the arrival of staff and sprung out the when post office manager took out his keys.
They then held the gun at the manager's side while he unlocked a safe before fleeing with cash, according to the owner of a neighbouring business.
The post office manager, reported to be in his 40s, was checked over by paramedics but required no treatment.
Kandiah Subodoran, a owner of nearby newsagent's shop and an acquaintance of the robbery victim, said: "I didn't say anything but we know them and I have been told about.
"It happened when the owner had taken his keys out and was waiting for others to turn up before he opened.
"The man came out of the telephone box. He held a gun to his hip and made him unlock the door."
Maureen Dunkley, 52, who lives near the post office, said: "I'm shocked. I was in there yesterday. It is getting bad here. It has got worse since they closed the police station.
"This area used to be nice. There is a good set of shops along here. But I wouldn't come out here at night now.
The Metropolitan Police's armed robbery investigation squad is investigating today's raid.
The post office will remain closed today.
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