Police have released CCTV footage of a man they want to speak to following a ‘highly unusual’ sexual assault on a 15-year-old at Preston bus station.

The man featured on these CCTV images is understood to have engaged the girl in conversation at around 8.30pm, last Tuesday, before asking her for a light for his cigarette while inquiring as to whether or not she had a boyfriend.

It is alleged he then offered the girl £10 to go for a ride in his car with him while attempting to stroke her thigh.

The victim pushed him away and he is believed to have left the scene angry at being rejected.

However, police said, he returned a short time later and once again attempted to engage the victim in conversation.

It is alleged he suddenly grabbed the victim’s hands, holding her from behind, before placing his hands down her top.

Police said the attacker then fled the bus station in the direction of the Pole Street area.

DC Nigel Marler said: “This was a highly unusual attack on a young woman on the Bus Station.

"I cannot recall the last time we had such an unusual incident and it is for that reason that I want to urgently trace this man.

"I would urge anyone who recognises the CCTV images to come forward and speak to us.”

Anyone who recognises the man is asked to call Preston police on 01772 203203.