A MAN who was attacked in the street as he enjoyed an evening with friends died while his family were at his hospital bedside.

Bakery owner John Carr was taken to hospital at the weekend after a fight outside the White Horse pub, in Loftus, east Cleveland.

He died the following day from severe head injuries.

Cleveland Police described how the 34-year-old became involved in an altercation in the High Street on Saturday evening.

He was treated at the scene by paramedics and transferred to James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough.

Police arrested two local men. They were both released on police bail last night.

The fracas broke out in the High Street at about 6.30pm after Mr Carr had been involved in an argument with two men.

Licensee and councillor Dave Fitzpatrick, of the Station Hotel, Loftus, who knew Mr Carr, said his death was a terrible tragedy.

He said Mr Carr, who was in the building trade and was a skilled plasterer, was also involved in running Loftus Bakery, on the High Street, with his partner, Debbie.

Elaine Lawton, manager of the White Horse pub, told last night how Mr Carr would often drink at her bar with friends.

She said: "He wasn't a regular here but we saw quite a lot of him. He seemed like a genuine guy and was known to a lot of people around Loftus.

"It's very tragic."

Police are appealing to bank customers, caught by security cameras using a nearby Barclays cash point and who may have crucial evidence, to come forward.

Detective Inspector Colin Galloway, who is leading the investigation, said: "Clearly, several people have seen this disturbance."

Sergeant John Green said: "This tragic incident started with a man enjoying a night out with friends and ended with him sadly losing his life."

Sgt Green would like to speak to anyone in the pub who may have details about what happened.

Anyone with information is asked to call (01642) 302626.