CCTV images of a group of young men have been released after a female train guard was abused on board a train travelling between Newport and Severn Tunnel Junction stations.

British Transport Police officers released the CCTV images of those they would like to speak to following the incident which also involved a fire extinguisher being let off, on January 27.

Investigating officer PC Debi Rouse said: “Five males boarded the train and pretended to be asleep in an apparent attempt to avoid payment of their fares. When challenged by the train guard, they became aggressive and verbally abusive towards her.

“The group were refused travel beyond Severn Tunnel Junction. However, before leaving the service they discharged a fire extinguisher on board the train.”

Having spoken to witnesses and viewed CCTV footage, officers have now identified five individuals they would like to speak to in connection with the incident.

“I am very keen to trace these people – who, it is understood, were travelling to Bristol Temple Meads - as we believe they may all have information which could assist the investigation,” said PC Rouse.

“This was an extremely distressing and intimidating experience for the victim. She was working the service alone and was understandably left feeling vulnerable as a result of this incident.

“The train guard was simply trying to do her job and had done nothing to provoke the abuse she received.

“I would like to appeal to the public to come forward with any information they may have in relation to this incident, and particularly anyone who recognises the individuals in the CCTV images.”

Anyone with information should contact British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40 quoting background reference WHA/B4 of 26/02/2014. Information can also be passed to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.