A PENSIONER died as a result of being attacked in the toilets of a pub, a court heard.

William Melling, who was known by his middle name Roy, suffered a major head injury after he was knocked to the floor in the Lion of Vienna, in Chorley New Road.

Mr Melling, who was aged 73 at the time of the alleged attack, died six months later as a result of his injuries.

Daniel Riley, who was aged 22 at the time, has denied the manslaughter of Mr Melling.

Rob Hall, prosecuting. told the jury that two weeks before the incident Riley, a regular customer at the Lion of Vienna, had a ‘verbal altercation’ with another regular, 46-year-old Angela Green, resulting in Riley being ‘barred’, or not allowed in the pub, for a week.

Ms Green told her friends about the altercation, one of whom was Roy Melling, who was regarded by Ms Green as a ‘second father’, the court heard.

After the ban ended, Riley returned to the pub socially with his brother, Benjamin Riley, and friends on January 22.

Mr Hall said: “There was indeed still some friction, but everyone in effect did their best to avoid there being any trouble,” said Rob Hall, prosecuting.

“But the events of Thursday, January 22, in effect resulted in exactly that.”

Mr Melling, who was 5ft 7ins tall and had suffered heart failure in July, 2014, accused Riley of being a coward and offered him outside for a fight, jurors were told, although no fight took place.

“That verbal exchange clearly wound the defendant up,” said Mr Hall.

Riley, who is 6ft 2ins tall, then said: “If this chap wants a fight, he can have a fight,” the court heard.

But Riley’s friend Patrick McGrath told him not to fight, adding: “If you hit him, you will kill him.”

Riley then appeared to calm down and later needed to go to the toilet but did not want to because Mr Melling was in there. A short time later the defendant headed to the toilets with his brother, Benjamin, then aged 20.

While he was at the urinal, Riley claims he was punched on the side of his face from behind without warning. In response, he claims he swung his arms out behind him in self-defence, knocking Mr Melling backwards on to the floor.

But no injury was seen on Riley, the court heard, and the prosecution says he made up the story.

Mr Hall said: “That act of knocking him over was a deliberate assault by the defendant.”

The effect of knocking Roy Melling was that the back of his head contacted with the floor with such force that the impact fractured his skull.

“That act of knocking him over was a deliberate assault by the defendant.”

The defence’s position is that Mr Riley was acting in self-defence.

and that those actions which put Roy Melling to the floor were in no way unlawful.

The trial continues.