Defeated local election candidate Shahed Mahmood has said he is grateful for the support of colleagues after he was critically injured while canvassing during the campaign.
The former Hyndburn Chamber of Trade President was rushed to hospital after suffering head injuries in a street attack.
Mr Mahmood was selected to stand for Labour in Oswaldtwistle’s Immanuel ward at last week’s local elections but was left unable to campaign personally following the attack on March 6.
The takeaway owner lost the election to Conservative candidate Josh Allen by 320 votes.
Mr Mahmood was unable to attend the count at the Town Hall on Friday - but did meet up with supporters later in the day following his release from hospital.
He told the Observer: “Although I lost it doesn’t matter in the end. My health is what matters.
"I’m a lot better now and hopefully I should be back to normal in the next week or so.
"I want to thank everybody who voted for me and my friends and campaigners from the Labour Party who went out to support me.
"It was great to hear that they were putting the word out.”
Mr Mahmood said he has also been left ‘over-whelmed’ by the support of well-wishers since his release from hospital last week.
He said: “I was out in Accrington and Oswaldtwistle last weekend after the election and people were very positive and saying I looked good and it was nice to see me around.
“A few pictures of me have been posted on Facebook and I’ve had hundreds of messages from people saying it was good to see me back to my normal self. It really means a lot.”
Kimberley Whitehead, who has been a friend of Mr Mahmood’s for many years, said they are ‘all pleased he his back’.
She said: “It’s a big relief. We have missed him and it’s been a sad time.
“It’s good that he got to come out on that final day.
“ It was his first official day out but it’s just a shame he didn’t win.”
l A 27-year-old man from Accrington arrested on suspicion of section 18 assault after the incident has been released on police bail until June 7.