A gun was fired as bar patrons stepped into to deal with a man armed with a shotgun during an aggravated robebry.

Detective Senior Sergeant John Clayton, of Whangarei CIB, appealed for witnesses to the aggravated robbery at Tikipunga Tavern in Whangārei overnight.

Police said two offenders entered the tavern at about 10.50pm last night, one armed with a shotgun and the other armed with an object similar to a screwdriver.

The people demanded cash and then attempted to remove money from tills.

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"At the same time, tavern patrons have taken exception to these offenders and have intervened with the offender with the shotgun," Clayton said.

"In the altercation the shotgun was fired once at the ground and fortunately no one was injured as a result."

One of the people then fled the tavern and got into an altercation with a staff member, who received a minor wound as a result.

A 25-year-old man who was held by the patrons required medical treatment and will be facing a number of charges.

However, the second suspect is still outstanding and it is possible that he got into a waiting vehicle and left the area.

"There was no money taken in this incident, however it had the potential to have a far worse outcome," Clayton said.

"I would like to acknowledge the patrons' assistance in this incident, however we generally discourage people from intervening in these situations for their own safety."

Anyone who witnessed the incident or who has information can contact police at (09) 430 4500."

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They can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

A post on the Tiki Tavern facebook page says: "Just want to inform you, we will be closed today, due to some circumstances. We will be open on Saturday."