A student who suffered brain damage in an allegedly racist hammer attack has lost his battle for compensation.

Henry Webster was 15 when he was repeatedly punched, kicked and hit with the sharp end of a claw hammer by a gang of Asian pupils and young men on the tennis courts at Ridgeway School in Wroughton, near Swindon, Wiltshire, in January 2007.

At London's High Court in October, Mr Webster, now 18, claimed there was a negligent failure by the school, which denied liability, to maintain proper discipline and deal with racial tension.

His mother Elizabeth, 14-year-old brother Joseph, and stepfather Roger Durnford, of Beranburh Field, Wroughton, were also seeking compensation for the trauma of witnessing his injuries. Their claims now also fail.

In his ruling, Mr Justice Nicol said the school did not breach its duty to take reasonable care to keep Mr Webster reasonably safe while on its premises.

Mr Webster and his family had also been unable to prove the necessary causal link between the things that the school did not do and his head injuries.