A teenager is recovering from serious facial injuries after he was attacked in Basildon town centre.

The incident happened in broad daylight on Wednesday afternoon when the 17-year-old boy was badly beaten in the face with unknown objects.

Witnesses reported seeing forensic officers examining the scene while a cordon was put in place.

Passers-by also said there was “a long trail of blood” on the ground.

The mother of the victim described the incident as “serious” and relatives of the young man said he was “not good”, but that officers were with him at the hospital.

Detectives are now appealing for information or any witnesses to the attack.

A spokesperson from Essex Police said: “We were called shortly after 4.25pm on Wednesday, March 20 with reports a 17-year-old boy had been assaulted in Town Square, Basildon.

“The victim was taken to hospital with injuries to his face and enquiries are ongoing.”

It is not known if the victim was known to his attackers.

The incident has caused concern about community safety in the town centre.

One woman, who has asked not to be named, said: “Hope the young man is doing well and they catch the scum bag who attacked him.

“Something needs to be done about all this violent crime.”

One witness, who was walking to work, said she saw a young man covered in blood.

She added: “I hope his ok - I wasn’t close enough to talk to him and help. Totally disgusting this happening in broad daylight.”

Anyone with information is asked to call Basildon Police Station on 101 quoting reference number 42/44067/19.

Alternatively, you can contact independent crimefighting charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

You can also share information online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information.

NB A previous version of the story reported that a knife may have been involved after several reports this may have been the case. The victim's mother has now confirmed this is untrue.