POLICE are investigating the possibility an armed robbery at Bargain Booze in Ramsbottom could be linked to a raid just two hours later just a few miles away.

On Sunday night, two men - one wearing a 'V for Vendetta' style mask - burst into the off-licence in Bolton Road West, hitting the owner over the head with the butt of a handgun. They made off with cash.

Police are not ruling out the possibility the pair went to neighbouring Radcliffe and robbed another store two hours later.

In the first incident, the robbers propped the door open with a paving slab, threatened staff, hit the owner with the firearm and stole money from the till.

Both men left in the direction of Ramsbottom town centre.

One of the men is described as possibly being in his early 20s, around 6ft tall and of slim build.

He is described as wearing a white V for Vendetta mask, a black tracksuit jacket with the hood up, light blue jeans with scuff marks on them and grey or blue deck shoes with white laces.

The other man is described as slim and was wearing a dark grey Adidas hooded top, white and grey jogging bottoms and black trainers.

Between 9.40pm and 9.50pm, two men went into Costcutter in Ainsworth Road, Radcliffe, pointed a gun at members of staff and demanded cash.

A shop worker confronted the men who then left without taking anything.

One of the men is described as being around 5ft 6in tall and of medium build.

He was wearing a black hooded coat with the hood up. His face was covered with a Hallowe'en style skeleton mask and he was carrying what is described as a silver handgun. The other man is described as being 5ft tall and of a large build. He had his face covered with a scarf.

A Greater Manchester Police spokeswoman said: “We are investigating the possibility that these two incidents may be linked.

“This is a line of enquiry which has not been ruled ut.”Anyone with information should call police on 0161 856 8181 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.