A FATHER and his two sons have admitted a charge of affray after violence broke out at the Appleby Horse Fair.

Bernard McGinley, 44, Cornelius McGinley, 22, and 19-year-old Barney McGinley, all denied an allegation of violent disorder in the town on August 13 but at Carlisle Crown Court today the three defendants admitted an alternative charge of affray.

They also each denied two counts of common assault.

The prosecutor in court, Charles Brown, said that the pleas entered by the trio were acceptable.

The three also denied two common assaults - said by prosecutors to have been committed against a father and his 14-year-old son.

The three defendants appeared together in the dock at Carlisle Crown Court.

Adjourning sentence until November 5, Judge Nicholas Barker granted all three defendants conditional bail - which in the case of the younger defendants includes a stipulation that they must an not enter Cumbria, except for legal appointments and court appearances.

Bernard McGinley was also told that his electronic tag can be removed so that the father-of-ten can continue to work as a lorry driver, though he must continue to live at his present address, in Shelford Road, Stoke-on-Trent.

That was also given as the address for Barney McGinley while Cornelius McGinley's address was given as Hollywall Lane, Stoke-on-Trent.

An earlier hearing was told that one of the two people who prosecutors say were the victims of the violence had lost consciousness, and sustained suspected to have suffered facial fractures. His injuries were later confirmed to have consisted of cuts and bruises.

The second victim, his son, did not need medical attention.

Every year, thousands of people descend on the town for the historic horse fair, which was cancelled in 2020 and postponed this year amid the Covid pandemic.

At the time of the most recent violence, police intelligence suggested people were planning to visit to the fair intent on causing serious violence as part of what police said were “ongoing feuds between different groups”.

All three defendants were told that they can have no contact with the victims in the case and nor must they post about the case on social media.