TWO men from the Crook and Willington area have appeared in court charged with the armed robbery of a village post office.

David Declan Hanley, 27, of Hawes Crescent, Crook, and James Kieth Wright, 26, of Park Street, Willington, appeared from custody before Newton Aycliffe magistrates on Monday afternoon where they entered no pleas.

The pair are charged with the robbery of Hunwick Post Office on Wednesday during which it is alleged they took stamps, postal orders and currency to the value of £7,500.

Both men are charged with one count of robbery, one count of possessing a handgun at the time of the robbery and one count of theft of a motorbike.

Mr Hanley is also charged with one count of acquiring/using/possessing currency.

They were ramanded in custody and are due to appear at Durham Crown Court on June 5.

Following their appearance today, detectives investigating the incident renewed their appeal for witnesses and are appealing for information about a number of vehicles which were seen in the area on the day of the crime.

They have released an image of a motorcycle rider they would like to speak to in connection with the robbery.

Officers would like to hear from anyone saw the man, who was using a motorbike displaying either the registration number KMH EJO or KM11 EJC in the Willington, Crook or Hunwick area between 2.30am and 12.30pm on April 25.

Police also want to talk to anyone who saw a white Ford Fiesta van with no front number plate or a small black Fiat 500 between 9am and 3pm on the day of the robbery in the Willington, Crook, Hunwick or Evenwood areas.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Detective Constable Andrea Luck at Bishop Auckland CID Office on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.