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Sheffield Supertram staff fear for safety after conductor is hit over the head with metal bar in robbery

The tram conductor is understood to be making a good recovery (photo: Dean Atkins)
The tram conductor is understood to be making a good recovery (photo: Dean Atkins)
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A tram conductor was clobbered over the head by a robber in a terrifying assault which has left colleagues fearing for their safety.

The male employee is understood to be making a good recovery after he was set upon at Stagecoach Supertram's Herdings Park terminus last Friday night.

Concerns have been raised about lighting at the purple route terminus in the wake of the attack (photo: Dean Atkins)

Concerns have been raised about lighting at the purple route terminus in the wake of the attack (photo: Dean Atkins)

But one member of staff says the attack has sparked serious concerns about safety at the stop, where he claims there have been several previous crimes, including an attempted robbery on a female conductor.

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He says the terminus is poorly lit and too far from the main road, and he understands CCTV at the location was not working on the night of the assault.

Stagecoach has suspended evening services to and from Herdings Park, which is the last stop on the purple route, while it looks at what can be done to improve safety.

A member of staff, who asked to remain anonymous, said: "I don't feel safe and I'm shocked the company thinks it's OK to put its staff at risk without this crime being solved. We shouldn’t be made to work in a situation where we fear for our safety.

Police are still hunting the attacker, and anyone with information is asked to call 101 (photo: Dean Atkins)

Police are still hunting the attacker, and anyone with information is asked to call 101 (photo: Dean Atkins)

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"We'd had discussions about making Leighton Road the last stop, because it's better lit and closer to the main road, and we feel there's less chance of anyone being attacked there.

"We've had windows smashed on trams at Herdings Park, and a couple of years ago someone tried to rob a female conductor there."

It is understood the conductor was walking along the platform at Herdings Park when he was confronted by the robber, who struck him over the head and made off with the ticket machine at around 11.30pm.

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His colleague said: "From what I've heard he was left with quite a lump on his head and was vomiting a lot. He had to spend the night in hospital but he's now recovering at home."

He added that the attacker is described as a man of about 6ft, who was dressed entirely in black, except for a red scarf.

A spokeswoman for Supertram said: "The safety of our staff is our absolute priority. For this reason we are making infrastructure and operational changes to the stop and are reissuing updated guidance about personal safety to staff.

"Although we have never before received complaints about the lighting at the stop, we are also assessing this to ensure it remains adequate.

"Following this upsetting incident, we made service changes in the area to review the measures in place to keep our employees safe.

"These changes will remain in place until the before mentioned assessments have been completed. We are also liaising with other partners who contribute to security on our network including the police, the local authority and South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive.

"We are continuing to assist police in their efforts to track down the person responsible for the incident on Friday night, as well as providing support for the employee involved."

* Until further notice, the last departure from Cathedral to Herdings Park on weekdays will be at 7.40pm, and the last tram leaving Herdings Park for Cathedral will be at 8.17pm. The last services on Saturdays will be at 7.45pm and 8.20pm, and on Sundays they will be at 7.46pm and 8.22pm. Later services on the purple route will operate to and from Birley Lane.

* Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101, quoting incident number 1127 of March 2.