A FATHER and son have denied murdering pensioner Barry Tyrie who was found critically injured outside a working men's club.

John Taylor, 57, and Daniel John Taylor, 30, both of Blackburn Road, Haslingden, spoke only to confirm their names and enter their not guilty pleas when they appeared at Preston Crown Court via video link from Preston Prison.

Members of Mr Tyrie's family sat quietly in the public gallery during the 20-minute hearing.

A trial date was set for February 24. It is expected to last up to two weeks.

A pre-trial review hearing will take place on February 7.

Both defendants were remanded into custody until their next court appearance.

Mark Stuart, defending John Taylor, said the key issues in the trial are likely to be how Mr Tyrie's injuries were caused.

Mr Tyrie, 69, died after being found with serious injuries following reports of a fight outside the Regent Street Working Men’s Club in Haslingden on August 25.

Despite the efforts of police and paramedics at the scene Mr Tyrie later died in hospital and a murder investigation was launched.

Police originally arrested four men, including John and Daniel, on suspicion of murder but a 25-year-old man and 31-year-old men were released without charge.

Detective Chief Inspector Gareth Willis, said: “Our thoughts remain with Barry’s family and friends at this difficult time.

“Throughout this inquiry the community of Haslingden have been incredibly co-operative and I would like to thank them for their support.”

Speaking in the aftermath of Mr Tyrie's death, Stephen Youds, the working men’s club’s landlord, said: “He was a gentleman. He was well respected and was well-known in the area. Everyone at the pub who knew him is in complete shock. He’s come into this club for years. We’re all deeply upset. He was the type of guy who would help you out in any way he could.”