A young boy was beaten and robbed by a gang at a busy train station.

The youngster was targeted at Grays Train Station, High Street, Grays at about 4.30pm on Monday, January 13.

The gang beat the child to the ground and stole his phone, watch and wallet.

His father said he blames himself for not being there at the time.

The parent said: "My son was coming out of the train station and the group of six who were all wearing hoods asked him for the time.

"They then grabbed his watch and then punched him repeatedly and he fell to the ground.

"He tried to fight back but they hit him a few times.

"This is the second time this has happened to my son; the first time was in December.

"My son is not sleeping and is still in shock after the incident.

"For people to come and do this is very bad. The police came very quickly and stopped and searched the train at the station.

"I am so upset about what has happened, we are all in shock as it's not nice to see your son like that.

"He goes to school in London and was getting the train home and I was going to pick him up from the station.

"I was only a few minutes away and I blame myself for not being there when this happened.

"We just want it to stop but we are lucky they didn't have a weapon."

A spokesman for Essex Police said: "We were called at around 5pm on Monday January 13, about a robbery close at a taxi rank outside Grays train station.

"We received a call from a third party after a 12-year-old boy reported that he was approached by a group of people in Crown Road before having his phone, watch and wallet taken.

"Anyone with information is asked to call 42/6904/20 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111."