A TAXI driver was robbed and punched after he picked up a fare.

The Chevron Taxi driver who picked up a passenger in Horden, near Peterlee suffered a black eye and swelling to his face following the assault which happened in the Crimdon Dene area next to Crimdon Dene Caravan Park on Tuesday.

Detective Constable Ian Whittaker of Peterlee CID, said: “The driver picked the man up at 11.40pm on Sunderland Road, Horden and drove him to Crimdon Dene Caravan Park where he was instructed to stop.

"It is there that the assault has taken place. He was punched by the suspect and the driver’s cash bag was stolen. The man then ran off into the woodland of the Dene.

“The suspect is described as being white, in his late 20s to early 30s, around 6ft 1 or 2, very skinny, a prominent nose which was broken on the bridge and with wide nostrils, a ‘Geordie’ accent, wearing a black ribbed body warmer, grey long-sleeved sweater and blue baseball cap.”

Anyone who witnessed the robbery or who has information should contact DC Whittaker of Peterlee CID on Durham Police 101