POLICE have praised Friar House staff and members of the public for their help in catching Smith and Holder.
After the duo were sentenced, Detective Constable Costin Bonell, of Sussex Police, said: “The sentence that Holder and Smith received reflects the seriousness of their actions.
“Holder disguised himself as a postman to gain entry to the jewellers and having a getaway car parked nearby, their intentions to make off with a considerable amount of jewellery was evident.
“The staff, although frightened, showed real courage in fighting the robbers off and those members of the public who helped to detain one of them in the street.
“This is an excellent example of members of our local community working together with the police to help catch and convict people responsible for crimes.”
The staff and members of the public who helped capture the men could now receive awards for their bravery.
Detective Inspector Ian Williams of Rother CID said: “This was a very frightening incident that happened on a busy high street in broad daylight.
“I would like to thank the two female members of staff who showed immense bravery and the public who detained Smith at the scene until police officers arrived.
“I am delighted to see that the public spirited actions of these people have helped us arrest and convict Holder and Smith.
“I will be recommending them to receive official recognition for their brave actions.”