A COUPLE'S last ditch attempt to rekindle their rocky relationship with a New Year holiday to Scotland hit the skids when a woman had chips thrown in her face at a Dumbarton hotel.

Steven Calder hurled the French fries at his then-partner at the Premier Inn at Lomondgate in the early hours of January 2.

He then went on to repeatedly punch her on the head and body.

Calder, 36, from Eden Vale in the Bootle area of Liverpool, appeared at Dumbarton Sheriff Court for sentencing on February 11, having previously pleaded guilty to a charge of assault to injury.

The court was told the incident, which was witnessed by a 10-year-old child, happened at around 4am and followed an argument between the couple.

Calder's partner suffered swelling to her forehead as a result of the assault; she reported the matter to hotel staff, who contacted police.

The procurator fiscal depute in court told Sheriff Sukhwinder Gill that when Calder had been charged, he had told police: "It wasn't just me."

His solicitor, Leo McGinn, said: "This was a course of conduct that does Mr Calder no credit.

"His reply to being cautioned and charged was never his position to me – he was always upfront and willing to take responsibility.

"He wishes to apologise to all involved.

"This was a relationship of around 18 months – it started fairly well, but was deteriorating by the time this incident occurred.

"It was a last ditch attempt to mend their relationship; clearly that did not work.

"The relationship was not good for either party, and is now at an end."

Mr McGinn suggested that an alternative to a prison sentence should be imposed, and added: "He does take ownership of the offence, and does not seek to minimise his involvement in it.

"He is a first offender; he has never been before a court before, and this has been a fairly chastening experience for him."

Sheriff Gill told Calder: "Your behaviour was completely inappropriate. This was an awful, violent assault on your partner, whilst children were present.

"However, you are assessed as being at low risk of reoffending, and you have accepted full responsibility."

Calder was handed a six-month social work supervision order, and was instructed to take part in a programme available in Liverpool aimed at male domestic abuse offenders.

He was also ordered not to approach or contact, or to attempt to approach or contact, his ex-partner for 12 months.