A YOUNG man sexually assaulted two women in separate incidents less than an hour apart, police say.

The offences took place in Taunton last Friday (July 18) at around 9pm in Hoveland Lane and at 9.40pm on Wellington Road.

On each occasion the culprit approached his victim and sparked up a conversation before sexually assaulting her.

Police have launched an investigation and want to speak to anyone who saw a man acting suspiciously in the area that evening.

Detectives believe a cyclist may have witnessed one of the attacks and have urged that person to come forward.

The offender is described as black, in his 20s and was wearing a white top and flips flops and was carrying a man bag.

Investigating officer DC Simon Dawkins said: "We believe these two assaults were committed by the same man and we're keen to speak to anyone who can help us identify him.

"The assaults have left the victims shaken and we're determined to do all we can to identify the offender.

"This is usually a very safe area and so these two assaults are unusual for this location.

"We believe this is an isolated incident and I don't want people to feel unduly concerned if they live in the area.

"However, I would ask local residents to cast their minds back to last Friday, ask themselves what they were doing and think about whether anyone matching this description or acting suspiciously was around.

Anyone with any information shoul call Taunton Police on 101.