TWO men have appeared in court on assault charges as a 32-year-old chef from an award-winning Ramsbottom restaurant fights for his life in hospital.

Victim Farhad Ghassemi was discovered unconscious, with serious head injuries, at the junction of Bridge Street and Bolton Street in Ramsbottom last Friday night.

Police attended the scene at a set of traffic lights following reports of an incident at 11pm, minutes after Mr Ghassemi had finished his shift at Ramsons restaurant in Market Place.

He was taken to hospital for treatment to a bleed on the brain and remains in a critical but stable condition in the intensive care unit at Salford Royal Hospital.

Two men appeared at Bury Magistrates Court on Tuesday in connection with the incident.

Marcus Dawson, aged 19, of Caernarvon Close, Greenmount, was charged with section 18 and section 47 assault.

Aaron Warrington, aged 24, of Peel Brow, Ramsbottom, was charged with section 18 assault.

Dawson was bailed until October 1 and Warrington was remanded in custody.

Two other men also arrested, aged 21 and 23, have been bailed pending further inquiries.

Mr Chris Johnson, owner of Ramsons restaurant, said: “Farhad has been here for four years. He is from Iran and left there because of the violence in his country. But it seems Britain is no better.”

He said that on the night of the incident, Mr Ghassemi, the second chef, had left to drive home with the nephew of his girlfriend, Louise Vickers, a chef at Ramsons’ sister restaurant Hideaway in Ramsbottom.

Ramsons restaurant was established 27 years ago and its accolades include Restaurant of the Year in the 2012 Manchester Food & Drink Festival Awards and number 73 in the Sunday Times’ list of Briitain’s top 100 restaurants.

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