A MAN has been left with severe injuries after he was attacked just after midnight on New Year’s Day.

James Ennis was left unconscious after he was struck on the head from behind while walking along Chancery Lane in Malton.

The 32-year-old, who lives in Norton, was discharged from hospital this week after suffering three bleeds on the brain – injuries which his partner Kayleigh Smith says could have killed him.

“James suffered a brain injury 12 years ago and he was told then that a severe blow to the head could kill him,” she said.

“All he remembers is walking up in hospital nine hours later.”

Kayleigh said James had called at the King’s Head, where she works, to wish her a happy New Year and was walking home when the attack took place.

“This has been absolutely devastating for us. Nothing can describe the effect it has had. I could just sit and cry,” she said.

“James needs 24-hour care now and is in so much pain.”

Kayleigh said James was now reluctant to go out and was receiving counselling.

“The only time he will go out is when he goes to the doctor’s and then he wants to come straight back home. He just doesn’t want to leave the house,” she said.

“It is an absolute disgrace that this has happened to someone in Malton. “James is originally from Liverpool and he moved here to get work in the stables.

“His family came over to visit him this week and they are not impressed and want him to go back home,” she added.

A spokesman for North Yorkshire Police said: “This was a very nasty assault which left the victim in a bad way and suffering from some quite serious injuries.

“When most people were celebrating the New Year he was recovering from his ordeal in hospital.

“It is important that anyone who witnessed the incident or has any information that can help the investigation contacts the police or Crimestoppers as soon as they can.”

Anyone who can help officers with their inquiries is urged to phone North Yorkshire Police on 101 – select option 2 – and ask for Malton police.

Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Please quote reference number 12130000539 when passing information about this incident.

• Two youths have been arrested on suspicion of assault and released on police bail until March.