THREE men, two of whom approached partygoers at a Bedwas pub armed with a kitchen knife and bottle, have avoided imprisonment.

Colin Davies, 23, of Greenwood Court, Caerphilly, appeared via video link at Cardiff Crown Court on Friday, February 9, after previously pleading guilty to affray and possession of a bladed article in a public place.

Morgan Thomas, 21, and Joshua Billingham, 20, both of no fixed abode appeared after previously pleading guilty to an alternate charge of a section four public order offence.

The court heard that the incident took place at the Bridgend Inn on Saturday, January 21 of last year.

Prosecuting, Kathryn Lane told the court that the three men were denied access to the party as they were not invited.

“Later, Davies was seen driving a Peugoet 206 to the pub. His passengers were the other two defendants,” said Miss Lane.

“His window was wound down – he was holding a large knife. He was described as shouting.”

Miss Lane said that Davies’ car was then shunted from behind by a silver people carrier, adding the driver of the vehicle has never been identified.

“Mr Billingham was holding a bottle in his hand,” said Miss Lane, adding Davies had a “red kitchen knife” in his hand and both men moved towards those at the party.

During his interview with the police following his arrest, Davies denied having a knife, stating it was “a metal pole” and that he was not driving.

Miss Lane added that Davies had six previous convictions across six offences, Billingham had seven convictions across 11 offences and Thomas just one conviction for one offence.

Defending Davies, Lowri Wynn Morgan said Davies was remorseful and described his actions as “stupid”.

He is truly sorry. It was stupid. He should never had done it and it was out of order.

Miss Wynn Morgan added that on the day of the incident, Davies’ six-year relationship with his former partner had come to an end and was under the influence of alcohol at the time.

She added that Davies is eager to find full time employment and had been working towards obtaining skills in prison to allow him to that on release.

Defending Thomas and Billingham, Richard Ace said both defendants were eager to work and did not want to sign on.

“They are both fit,” said Mr Ace, adding Billingham was working “ad-hoc for his uncle three times a week labouring”.

“There is a level of income,” he said, “he does not want to sign and his intention is to work.”

Turning to Thomas, Mr Ace said: “He was not work now but will not sign on. Starting on the 25th, he is going to begin full time employment.”

Concluding, judge Jeremy Jenkins said the group were aggrieved at firstly not being allowed entry to the party, and then being shunted by another car.

“You started walking towards the public house,” he said.

“You, Mr Davies, with a knife and you, Billingham, were carrying a bottle.

“This was bravado more than anything else. No-one was actually injured.”

Davies received a term of eight months concurrent for each offence – affray and possession of a bladed article in a public place – suspended for 18 months.

Thomas and Billingham both received 12-month community orders and all three men will be required to undertake 80 hours unpaid work and pay costs of £250 within a six-month period.