A tourist was beaten to a pulp after she turned down the advances of a younger man in central London.

The 60-year-old woman, who has visiting the UK from Austria, exited Warwick Avenue tube station near Paddington last Friday (10 March) at around 8pm GMT, when the man approached her and tried to chat her up, according to police.

She is said to have politely declined and continued walking along Warwick Avenue in the direction of Formosa Street, but the man – believe to be in his late 20s – followed her and grabbed her from behind.

He then repeatedly punched her in the face, leaving her with substantial cuts and bruises.

The woman was then found by a passer-by, who did not witness the attack but called emergency services who then took the victim to a central London hospital.

London Metropolitan Police have released the woman's image in an appeal to find her attacker.

Detective Constable Mike Reilly, the investigating officer from Westminster CID, said: "This was a vicious unprovoked attack that has left the victim very shaken. Her injuries are so severe that she requires surgery.

"Warwick Avenue is a busy area, especially at 8pm on a Friday evening. Someone must have seen something and I'd appeal for anyone with information to come forward as soon as possible so we can bring the perpetrator to justice."

The suspect is described as a white man, aged around 25-27 years, about 5ft 8ins tall with short brown hair and brown eyes. He was wearing light coloured trousers, a brown jacket and a black baseball cap.

Anyone with information is asked to call Westminster CID via 020 7321 8260 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Austrian tourist beaten in London
Austrian tourist assaulted in London after turning down the advances of a man in Warwick Avenue in London on 10 March London Metropolitan Police