A FORMER Grays man who was found stabbed to death in a park has been described as a “great lad” by his former boss.

Jim Attfield, 33, who used to work at the Old Shant pub, on London Road, was found in Lower Castle Park in Colchester on Saturday with 102 stab wounds.

Mr Attfield, a dad-of-five, worked there for four years before he was hit by a car outside the pub in April, 2010.

The accident left Mr Attfield with speech problems and a weakness on his left side, which affected his balance.

He moved to Coggeshall to recover with his family, before living independently in East Bay, Colchester, with help from brain injury charity Headway.

Landlord Kevin McDonagh said staff and punters are still shock over the news about the man they knew as James.

He said: “We’re all absolutely devastated. He was a very quiet man and kept himself to himself, but he was a great lad and a great worker.

“He was a bit of a loner, but everybody really liked him.

"James just came in one day off the cuff and asked for a job, and he was a fantastic barman.

“I nearly fell off my stool when I heard the news. Nobody deserves that kind of thing.”

Kevin said the pub is to have a collection in place for flowers, and hopes to hold a minutes silence in memory of Jim tomorrow night.

Anyone with information can call the police’s dedicated hotline to the major investigations team on 01245 282103, available 8.30am to 6pm.

Alternatively, call Colchester police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.