Actor Clive Mantle has had a part of an ear bitten off in an attack in Newcastle in the early hours of Sunday morning.
The incident occurred at 4.30am in a Travelodge hotel in the city where Mantle was staying after performances of The Ladykillers at the Theatre Royal. Investigating a commotion outside his room, Mantle was knocked to the floor by two men, one of whom bit through his ear. He also suffered cuts and bruises.
He underwent an emergency operation at the Royal Victoria Infirmary to reattach the ear and is now recovering at home in London.
Mantle’s agent Bryn Newton told The Stage the actor was “very badly shaken” and may need further surgery.
“It was a shocking, competely unprovoked attack and there is no guarantee the ear will survive the trauma because it was a while before the missing piece of the ear was found.”
On medical advice, Mantle has left the production, which began in September last year and has a further three weeks of its run left before ending its tour.
Jon Bath, head of production for the show’s producer Fiery Angel, said the attack was “horrifying and disgusting and has shaken everyone up”. He added: “We’ll be keeping in close touch with Clive while he recovers and wish him a speedy recovery”.
Understudy Marcus Taylor will replace Mantle for the remainder of the tour, with his first performance tomorrow night in Salford.
A 32-year-old man from Hamilton in South Lanarkshire has been charged by police with wounding with intent and will appear before magistrates next month. A second man was released on bail and a third man released without charge.