A dad-of-one from South Ribble has told how he was knifed within centimetres of his heart during a night out.
Tom Alder, 30, from Bamber Bridge, is recovering in hospital after he was stabbed in the chest in Cranbourne Street.
He had been having a drink in the White Bull pub, in Station Road, when his friend told him he had been having problems with a group of men outside.
And when Mr Alder went outside to tell the hooded group to leave his friend alone, he was attacked.
The blow went an inch into his chest and punctured one of his lungs. It was just centimetres from hitting his heart.
Despite being taken to the Royal Preston Hospital in a critical condition, he is recovering and is expected to be released soon.
Mr Alder, whose 24-year-old girlfriend Alisha Greer is 16 weeks’ pregnant, said: “I’m just glad I’m still alive.”
“I remember going outside and there were all these youngish lads with their hoods up and in black tracksuits.
“They were stood in a line and the one in the middle pulled a knife out and stuck it in my chest.
“He pulled it back out and I looked at him and said, ‘Tell me you’ve not just done what I think you have’.
“I put my hand to my chest and I could feel all the blood. I think I was in shock.
“I turned to go back to the pub, got to the corner of Cranbourne Street and just collapsed.
“I was in and out of consciousness and there were that many people around me, I was panicking.”
Mr Alder, who works as a garage door fitter, says he also remembers one man holding a towel over his wound, trying to stop the flow of blood.
“I felt (the knife) going in and coming back out, but it all just happened in slow motion,” he recalled.
“It was the way he looked at me, it was like he wasn’t bothered.
“It went an inch into my chest and if it had gone the other way it could have been my heart.
He has been inundated with cards and text messages from well-wishers after the terrifying incident.
He said: “I’m not a fighter. I’m just glad I’m not dead. I didn’t want my girlfriend having a child and me not being here to see it.”
The incident happened at around 12.30am on Sunday.
* Two men aged 20 and 22 were arrested and two further men, aged 21 and 25, were then arrested. All have been questioned by detectives and bailed.