A FATHER-OF-ONE who assaulted an off-duty bouncer and left him needing seven stitches in a midnight pub fracas, kept his freedom.

Burnley Crown Court heard how HGV driver Timothy Bolchover, 26, had been barred from the Duke of Wellington in Great Harwood, which had then been his ‘local’, the night before.

But he then returned and demanded landlady Nadine Davies serve him.

Victim Mark Eccles, who was outside the premises chatting to Ms Davies, a friend of his, stepped between them as Bolchover was aggressive and the landlady thought she was going to be attacked.

The defendant tried to get past him, the victim told him Ms Davies didn't want him there and was punched in the eye by Bolchover.

Mr Eccles tried to grab the defendant, Bolchover continued taking swings at him, the pair ended up on the other side of the road and the victim was hit twice to the head. Mr Eccles tried to strike Bolchover back, but was punched to the ground. The defendant ran off.

The defendant, of Stevenson Street West, Accrington, had admitted assault causing actual bodily harm, on July 31, last year. He was given 10 months in jail,suspended for 18 months,with 150 hours unpaid work and must pay £250 compensation.

Ken Hind, defending, said Bolchover had been drinking and was out without his long- term partner. He thought the landlady would let him in.