A married couple accused of illegally possessing cannabis chocolate bars are to stand trial early next year.

Lesley Jane Gibson and Mark Gibson, both aged 55, appeared at Carlisle Crown Court today.

They faced three charges.

One alleges the production of the class B controlled drug cannabis; one alleges the possession of a quantity of cannabis - namely cannabis bush; and a third alleges the possession of a quantity of cannabis contained within chocolate bars.

All three charges date back to January 19 this year.

During today's short hearing in front of Judge David Potter, both Lesley Gibson and Mark Gibson - who were represented by barrister Andrew Ford - entered not guilty pleas to the three charges they jointly face.

A trial - expected to last two to three-days - is due to start on January 6 next year.

Before then, the Gibsons, both of Yewdale Road, Morton, Carlisle, must attend a pre-trial review hearing on December 5.

In the meantime the couple were granted unconditional bail by Judge Potter.