ARMED police are escorting high value cash vans across Barnsley to deter would-be hijackers.

Two armed police officers stationed themselves outside New Lodge Post Office today as part of an ongoing operation to protect high-value cash transfers.

The operation is ongoing by South Yorkshire Police across Barnsley throughout December after figures show a rise in criminals trying to hold up vans carrying cash and high value items. 

Detective Constable Nina Kitchener said: "We provide a high priority service to all cash carriers and their employees throughout the year and this is intensified over the Christmas period when such attacks traditionally occur.

“We will use a combination of policing tactics to deter and capture offenders. These include deploying both covert and overt police resources, together with the Force’s helicopter and specialist firearms teams to keep track on security vans during this vulnerable time."