NEWS IN BRIEF: Gunman thwarted

A SHOPKEEPER grappled with a masked gunman who burst into his store in Sharrow Lane before discovering that the weapon was fake.

“I probably wasn’t as shocked as I could have been because exactly the same thing happened to me six months ago but on that occasion the gun was real and he did get away with some money,” said Paul Huxley, aged 31, who manages The Local. A plastic gun snapped in half as the robber fled without the money.

A 37-year-old man has been remanded in custody by magistrates charged with attempted robbery and having a firearm with intent to commit an indictable offence.

Ponds Forge accolade

PONDS Forge has been voted the UK’s favourite place to swim. It came top in a survey of more than 36,000 swimmers, beating places such as Crystal Palace Sports Centre and the Manchester Aquatics Centre.

General manager Helen Broadbent said: “We are thrilled that we have been recognised in this way and this survey highlights our commitment to swimming and encouraging people to take up a sport which has so many benefits, both physically and mentally.”

Swimmers were canvassed in advance of the Marie Curie Cancer Care Swimathon at 580 pools across the UK, including Hillsborough and Concord, from April 8 to 10.

Soldier honoured

A SHEFFIELD soldier awarded the George Medal after dealing with the highest number of improvised explosive devices while serving in Afghanistan is to be offered an honorary membership of Stannington and District Royal British Legion. Warrant Officer Karl Ley, aged 29, who was also Most Outstanding Soldier at the annual military awards, visited the branch at their base at the Crown and Glove pub in Uppergate Road.