Detectives are investigating after a man tried to abduct a child in Wigan.

It happened between 2pm and 3.30pm on Monday 1 September 2014 on Holmes House Avenue in Winstanley, where it was reported a man had attempted to abduct an eight-year-old girl.

The man was described as being white, about 58-years-old, 6ft tall, of slim build with grey short hair, stubble and yellow teeth. He was described as wearing a long black coat with stains on, bare legs from the knees down and grey shoes.

The girl was riding along on her scooter with her friend who was just ahead, she passed the electrical substation when the man came out from behind the substation and grabbed her ponytail and put his hand over her mouth.

He then let go of her ponytail and grabbed hold of her arm, the girl used her elbow to hit him in the stomach and screamed to her friend who ran back and threatened to phone the police.

The offender then ran back into the wooded area.

Detective Sergeant Stephen Baldham from Wigan division, said: “This man approached a young girl who was out with her friend on a sunny afternoon riding her scooter.

“We do not know what this man’s intentions were, but we are nevertheless very concerned about this incident and we have launched an investigation led by a team of experienced detectives.

“We are appealing to any possible witnesses to come forward and assist our investigation. If anyone saw a man matching this description around this area of Winstanley on Monday or knows someone who fits this description and was likely to have been in or around this area, we are keen to speak to you.

“I understand that this incident will cause a lot of concern in the community and would therefore like to reassure residents that all patrolling officers have been given a detailed description of this man, and we will do all we can to address concerns and, more importantly, find the man responsible.”

Anyone with any information is asked to call police on 0161 856 5307 or to call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.