TERRIFYING CCTV images of armed robbers targeting a convenience store have been released by police.

Three men, one wearing a distinctive white face mask, fled with £4,000 from the Co-op store in Chorley New Road, Horwich.

One of the men was threatening staff with a baton type instrument in the shop just before 11pm on Tuesday, as they were preparing to serve the last customers and close for the day.

It is understood one of the members of staff was frogmarched and forced to hand over cash.

Staff are said to have been left shaken, with one described as being traumatised.

Detectives say they are following 'crucial lines of enquiry'.

All the men were wearing dark clothing, with covered faces.

DC Jon Ashcroft, from Bolton police division, said: “We are following crucial lines of enquiry and a name has already been put forward.

“One of the three was carrying a baton type instrument. They demanded money and ransacked the till and the safe and stole £4,000.”

He added: “Robberies of this nature can have a long term impact on those involved and we are appealing to anyone who has any information to contact us.

“Fortunately in this case no one was physically hurt but a member of staff who was ordered to handover the money has been left traumatised.”

He added: “We want anyone who has heard anything or recognise the men or clothing, one of the men was wearing a distinctive white face mask to come forward.

“The three left in a VW Polo and drove off in the direction of Bolton.”

The store reopened the day after and the Co-op has appealed for information from the public to help police catch those responsible.

Anyone with information or who can help police with their inquiries should ring 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or by visiting https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/give-information-online/ quoting 2831 with the date October 31, 2017.