A man who robbed a shop just minutes after trying to hold-up a pedestrian has been jailed at Lincoln Crown Court.

Daniel Nichols, 30, of Friars Lane, Lincoln, walked into the Deli shop on Newland in Lincoln and went straight behind the counter.

Katrina Wilson, prosecuting, said that the shop worker, who had been preparing an order in a back room, emerged to find Nichols with his hand in the till.

“She was shocked. She asked what he was doing and he said that he was taking some money.

“She tried to get him out of the shop but the defendant told to get off him or he would stab her. He took between £10 and £15 from the till and he walked out.”

Miss Wilson said that just 10 minutes earlier Nichols walked up to a pedestrian further along Newland and threatened him saying “I’ve got a knife. Give me your money or I’m going to stab you.”

The victim told Nichols to go away and then ran off. Moments later he looked back to see that Nichols had made no attempt to follow him.

Miss Wilson told the court that although Nichols told both victims that he had a knife no weapon was seen.

The two victims each called police and later in the day officers were driving along St Rumbold Street when they spotted a man fitting the description of the robber.

Miss Wilson said: “He was arrested and taken to the police station.

“He denied the incident involving the pedestrian but admitted taking money from the till of the deli but said he made no threats to the shop worker.

“He told the officers he was a heroin addict and had stolen the money to feed his habit.”

The court was told that Nichols had 28 previous convictions for shoplifting and others for burglary but no previous offences of robbery on his record.

Nichols admitted charges of attempted robbery and robbery arising out of the incidents on the morning of December 10, 2020. He was jailed for 22 months.

Mark Watson, in mitigation, said that the offences happened a few days after Nichols was released from an earlier jail sentence and has now been recalled to prison to complete that sentence.

“He doesn’t recall these offences. What is clear is that these were acts of desperation.”

A tortoise was rescued near Lincoln after flooding disturbed its hibernation and left it in a dangerous situation.

Alexander, a 13-year-old pet tortoise owned by Dunholme resident Stewart Green, was in the middle of hibernation when heavy rain and flooding hit the village on Thursday.

Stewart described the back gardens on Tennyson Drive as “lakes” and said that the back doors were being sandbagged and the fire brigade were pumping water from gardens to protect homes from flooding.

Tennyson Drive in Dunholme was hit with serious flooding on Thursday. | Photo: Diana Johnson

He told The Lincolnite that Alexander usually hibernates in his hedgehog house inside Stewart’s greenhouse, where he will rest from September until spring, but this year he fancied a change.

Alexander was hibernating underneath the compost where Stewart’s tomatoes were growing.

As the flooding got worse and water rose, it was apparent that Alexander was in trouble, so Stewart had to disturb his pet’s sleep to move him into his hedgehog home, where he is now safe and sound.

He dug Alexander out of his compost shelter and moved him into his wooden house, where he now rests under a bed of hay until spring.

Stewart said: “Alexander is now fast asleep again under some hay in his hedgehog house.”

Alexander is back in hibernation, and would like to not be disturbed for a while!

Works to repair and resurface Pelham Bridge in Lincoln are set to last over two months this summer.

Exact dates will be announced in due course, but work is expected to take place between June and August 2021, lasting nine weeks.

The bridge, opened by the Queen herself in 1958, will have the expansion joints replaced, as well as being resurfaced and a new course of water-proofing installed.

A new barrier will be installed between the footpath and the road on the bridge to keep pedestrians safe.

Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

The work has been a long time coming, originally planned to take place in January with a single lane closure in each direction.

As plans for this project were being finalised, the council discovered that the bridge could not run effectively and safely alongside works taking place.

The reason for the project’s rescheduling is to reduce disruption for divers, as well as to complete the work as quick as possible.

During the works, northbound traffic will be diverted along the East West Link Road and Tentercroft Street to cross University Bridge, and use Newland and Wigford Way to rejoin Melville Street.

As for southbound traffic, the diversion route will be vice versa to northbound, and pedestrians will be directed to the High Street to cross at the level crossing.

Lincoln streets during lockdown. Photo: Joshua Bell

This will also temporarily disable the Tidal Flow system on Canwick Road, directly south of the bridge.

The middle lane will be closed here, both for safety and smoothness of traffic flow.

Cllr Richard Davies, executive member for highways at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “When it became clear that we couldn’t complete the necessary works with just one lane closure, we looked for a time when traffic would likely be lightest across Pelham Bridge.

“Thankfully, the newly opened Eastern Bypass is taking traffic away from this route already, and will provide an alternative option for many during the bridge closure.

“The bridge is also much less busy during school summer holidays.

“There’s no doubt that Pelham Bridge is one of the busiest routes in Lincoln, and we appreciate that this closure will have a significant impact on traffic, but the bridge hasn’t been re-waterproofed since it was built over 60 years ago.

“This work is essential to make sure that water and salt can’t get into the joints of the bridge and weaken the structure.”

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