The boss of high-street photographic chain Jacobs has told how he stood his ground as youths smashed windows and tried to ransack the firm’s flagship store in Leicester last night.

Anthony Jacobs and his son Elliott, general manager, headed to the Granby Street shop in the city centre when an alarm alerted them at around 10pm.

The pair arrived to find youths ?cruising in cars… and packs on bikes?.

Fearing looters would escape with camera gear, they entered the store and remained at the scene until the early hours, determined not to let them run amok.

?I refused to be beaten. For my own piece of mind, I wasn?t having any of it. It?s opportunistic thuggery,’ said Anthony Jacobs who is managing director of the family run business.

In an interview with Amateur Photographer, he added: ?They were standing outside the shop having their picture taken.?

The front door and windows were smashed but stock remained intact, said Anthony who is reluctant to be seen as a ?hero?.

He explained that the store holds a special place in the firm’s history, as it was Jacobs’ first camera shop. It opened in the 1940s.

Anthony said he remained at the scene until 2pm, until the shop had been firmly boarded up.

He believes the looters moved elsewhere when they realised the premises were occupied.

Jacobs was founded as a chemist shop in 1939 by Cecil Jacobs. The Granby Street outlet was the first Jacobs store to have a photographic department.

Leicestershire Police said 14 people were arrested in connection with the disorder which resulted in damage to street furniture and shop fronts.

Offences include public order, damage and burglary.

There were no reported injuries.