Former rugby stars the Sampsons sentenced for ‘The Battle of Bolands Bar’

David Sampson
David Sampson

A FATHER and son ex-professional rugby duo have been sentenced for their part in the “battle of Bolands Bar”.

David Sampson, 67 and his son Dean, 44, were involved in an bar room brawl with Scott Whittell, 39, on Union Street on July 27 last year.

Dean Sampson

Dean Sampson

Sampson snr, of Lee Moor Road, Stanley, is writing a book about the so-called battle.

But a judge, who watched CCTV footage, described it as a “rather tame fight”.

Leeds Crown Court heard how former Castleford Tigers star Dean Sampson became embroiled in a dispute with Whittell’s group.

And a comment was said which made Sampson jnr unhappy.

He didn’t respond at first after his wife and father tried to calm things down.

But a fight later developed between Sampson jnr and Whittell.

They ended up falling over a table.

And they accidentally injured a 68-year-old woman who suffered bruising after being caught by a flailing arm.

Sampson snr, a former Wakefield Trinity player, was seen throwing uppercuts at a man tussling with his son.

He later struck a prone man with a bar stool who had also been struggling with his son.

All three defendants previously admitted affray but this week Sampson snr tried to change his plea to not guilty claiming he had been defending his son from an “army” of men.

But Recorder Richard Mansell QC said: “He rather grandiosely described this rather tame fight as the battle of Bolands Bar on which he is writing a book.”

He said Sampson snr was “no shrinking violet at 67” and had played rugby and run a pub.

Recorder Mansell added: “He strikes me as a pretty confident man. I’m not referring to his boasts about his singing talents.”

Earlier Sampson snr told the court: “I get stopped in the street in Wakefield because of who I am and because I’m a singer. I’m a town centre singer.”

He said he wasn’t humble when it came to his singing attributes and said he’d been taught from the age of ten to sing like legendary tenor Mario Lanza.

But Recorder Mansell said he’d looked in vain at the CCTV footage for the “army of people” said to be attacking Sampson’s son.

He told David Sampson: “You regard yourself as something of a bit of a character locally. You regard yourself as a pillar of the community. You regarded these people as yobs and bullies. You felt the need to stand up and fight your ground and that’s what you did.”

David Sampson was sentenced to a 56-day curfew order from 9pm to 7am.

Dean Sampson, of Robertsgate, Lofthouse, was sentenced to a community order with 100-hour unpaid work requirement.

Scott Whittell of of Hyde Park, Eastmoor, was also given a community order but with a 30-day activity requirement.