Singer Phil Collins 's elderly mother yesterday told of her ordeal as the latest victim of the Rolex Robbers.
June Collins, 85, was attacked by three men as she and her business partner Barbara Speake, 71, owner of the famous drama school, got in their car to drive home. "Barbara was just about to start the car when the doors were wrenched open and these men started to hit and punch us," said Mrs Collins."They were grabbing at our jewellery and watches, trying to get our bracelets off our wrists and shouting the whole time. I was absolutely terrified. What a thing to happen in a place like West London where we have worked and been safe since 1961.
"Barbara's nephew David was in the back seat and he was punched in the head, and Barbara was very badly cut about the lip. She lost about GBP6,000 worth of jewellery and a watch. Luckily for me, I was wearing gloves so they didn't see my rings, I would have been distraught to have my engagement or wedding ring stolen.
"They wanted my bracelets, but I was quivering so much I couldn't get the clasps open to get them off. I started to scream and they took flight. Phil is pretty disgusted at all this. He was very upset for me, concerned and angry. He has phoned three times to find out if I am okay. Of course I'm still a bit shaky, but I just have to get on with things. They were all young men, and l feel a great sadness that young people like that can commit such a crime."
Former Genesis drummer Collins, 49, said: "I am very upset and angry. My mother had nothing stolen but was punched and hurt. The words I would use to describe this kind of incident are not printable. I just hope those men can live with their consciences."
Miss Speake, whose former pupils at the GBP1,000-a-term Barbara Speake Stage School include supermodel Naomi Campbell, comedian Brian Conley, singer Michelle Gayle and actor Jack Wild, said she was more angry than hurt. "My charm necklace was of massive sentimental value and all the insurance money in the world couldn't bring it back," she said. "It was a miracle we weren't badly hurt."Police suspect it is the latest in a string of robberies in London of high-profile victims. They include the 94-year-old mother of film director Ridley Scott, chef Anton Mosimann, 52, TV presenters Robert Robinson and Anthea Turner, actress Britt Ekland, supermodel Caprice, Formula One tycoon Bernie Ecclestone, millionaire zoo owner John Aspinall and model Jilly Johnson.
© The Express