A BANK robber who threatened to blow himself up was tackled to the ground by a hero security guard.

Khalid Yusuf strapped a device to his body and what appeared to be a trigger device to his wrist before walking into the TSB Bank in Derby Street, Bolton.

But as he forced shocked cashier Jean Webster to hand over £1,000, G4S security guard Lee Walsh, who was delivering cash to the building, overheard Yusuf tell her, "Give me the money or I'll blow it".

At Bolton Crown Court Paul Treble, prosecuting, told how Mr Walsh sprang into action.

"Mr Walsh decided to act. He approached the defendant, grabbed his top and pinned him against the counter," said Mr Treble.

"He could see he had clear plastic wrapping around his stomach and saw a device in his right hand with a big red button on it."

The brave security guard then knocked Yusuf's legs from under him and, when he landed on the floor face downwards, pinned him down and pushed his own panic button.

"He called 999 at the same time as keeping the defendant pinned to the floor," said Mr Treble.

The circular piece of plastic strapped to Yusuf's chest was later identified as being from the bottom of a torch and the device taped to his wrist was a lighter, with headphone cables used to give the impression of wires.

The court heard how Ms Webster and Mr Walsh had not suffered psychological effects from the incident.

"They appear to be quite stoical about this. He (Mr Walsh) indicated he would have been more upset if he hadn't become involved," said Mr Treble.

Describing Mr Walsh as 'brave', the Honorary Recorder of Bolton, Judge Timothy Clayson, said that he should be rewarded for his actions.

"I award him £300 from public funds to recognise, to a small extent, that bravery," he said, adding that he will also write to the Chief Constable of Greater Manchester asking for Mr Walsh to receive a commendation.

Yusuf, aged 38, of Salisbury Street, Deane, pleaded guilty to robbery.

The court heard that he has been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia which, at the time of the robbery on July 11 last year, was exacerbated by drug use.

Mr Treble told how, at 3.45pm Yusuf took a taxi from his home to the bank and walked into the building with the hood of his loose-fitting top across his face.

He walked up to the counter where cashier Ms Webster was sitting, telling her, "I've got a detonator".

Mr Treble added: "He showed his arm which had an item fastened to his wrist. He then unzipped his jacket and revealed sticky tape taping something to his chest.

"The prosecution say it was to give the impression that he it was a bomb."

Yusuf told her: "Give me all the money or I'll blow it up."

She initially handed over £100 in £5 notes, but he then demanded she give him £1,000 in £50 denominations, which she gave him.

Fortunately, at the time, G4S security guard Lee Walsh was making his delivery.

"He saw the defendant talking to Ms Webster and he became aware that she looked shocked and more pale than usual," said Mr Treble, added that, overhearing the conversation he immediately acted to help.

Alexander Langhorn, defending, stressed that, although Yusuf has a criminal record for dishonesty offences, there are no crimes of violence before.

He added that Yusuf had married in 1998, but his mental health had started to deteriorate after his wife died in an explosion in India in 2001.

"At the time of the robbery Mr Yusuf was an acutely ill man," he said.

Since December last year, Yusuf had been detained in a secure psychiatric unit and Judge Clayson stated that improvements in his mental health are the most important factor in safeguarding the public when he is eventually returned to the community.

The judge sentence Yusuf to a hospital order under Section 37 of the Mental Health act, which means he will not be released until he is well enough.

Speaking at the time of the robbery, modest Mr Walsh, aged 47, from Bolton, said: "I have been robbed four times doing the job in 16 years and I just didn’t want him to get away with the money.

“I know the staff in the bank so I’m glad no one was hurt.

“The woman who handed over the money looked shocked and there must have been at least three members of public in there at the time.

“I stopped a shoplifter with a knife in a Tesco once so it’s not the first time I’ve stopped someone getting away with cash.”

Head of Operational Risk for G4S Cash Solutions, Gareth Skinner said: “Our crews play a vital part in delivering cash to bank premises up and down the country and they are a familiar presence at many branches.

"Lee showed remarkable courage last July in thwarting this attempted robbery and ensuring the attacker will face justice.

“His presence of mind to secure the cash box he was carrying, tackle the assailant and recover the bank’s money is a tremendous credit to him and we are lucky to have him in our team."