A shop was targeted so frequently by shoplifters that its owner installed bulletproof glass to stop customers getting to any stock.
Instead of walking up to a shelf and picking up essentials, at The Offey in Basildon, Essex, customers must ask a sales assistant to get it for them.
That’s because the entire shop’s stock sits behind bulletproof glass.
Even the person working at the till is protected by metal bars.
According to Essex Live, the shop has been the same for 20 years after the then-owner installed the glass to prevent against thefts.
It was never removed and has now become a welcome sight for regular shoppers.
Manager Karen Waldon told the site: ‘There were smash and grabs.
‘They used to just walk in and walk out with whatever they wanted.
‘In the end [the owner] got fed up with it and decided to put this up to stop it.’
Karen, who has worked at the shop for more than seven years, spends her days walking around the shelves that are glassed off to pick up items that customers request.
She then takes the items over to the till, which is blocked by metal bars, where she can pass them through to shoppers.
New customers often attempt to get through to the main shop area but find themselves stuck behind the reinforced glass door.
She said: ‘It’s hard to explain. People literally will try and open the door. They’ll try and say I want to be where you are.
‘But they’re not allowed to be where I am.’
The glass walls may seem extreme, but they have managed to keep The Offy in business with no break ins or thefts in over a decade.
While a newsagent down the road had two burglaries in the space of a week in 2016, Essex Live reports.
Karen said the area is not notoriously dangerous, but the glass helps to make staff feel safer too.
She said: ‘Obviously it’s safer, it makes it safer for us girls in the evenings.
‘Locals know us and how to shop with us. There’s only one like this, we are definitely unique.’