A neighbour dispute about overhanging tree branches led to a violent attack by two men.

Builder John Foster turned up outside his home, where the row had arisen, with one of his employees Liam Williams.

CCTV footage played at Mold Crown Court showed Foster repeatedly punching his neighbour’s partner Stephen Walker.

The attack even continued after both men fell over a wall.

Williams was said to have joined in by aiming a stamp or a kick at his head.

Mr Walker’s friend Samuel Roberts tried to intervene but Williams threw a brick at him which hit him on the arm and damaged Mr Walker’s truck.

Foster, aged 36, of St Asaph Avenue, Kinmel Bay, who ran a successful building business, escaped immediate imprisonment but was ordered to pay Mr Walker £3,500 compensation and £750 prosecution costs.

Both received a 22 month prison sentence suspended for two years and were placed on rehabilitation.

Williams, aged 34, of Dyserth Road, Rhyl, was ordered to pay £250 compensation to Mr Roberts with £250 prosecution costs.

The two admitted GBH upon Mr Walker, common assault upon Mr Roberts, and Williams admitted damage to Mr Walker’s vehicle.

Judge Rhys Rowlands said the offence took place against a background of “an unfortunate and unnecessary dispute” between neighbours in Kinmel Bay.

Foster lived there and Mr Walker’s partner was a neighbour.

There had been problems with overhanging trees from Foster’s land.

“Such disputes are not uncommon.

“They always create problems - and work for lawyers and the civil court,” he said.

But this case was different because the two defendants lost all sense of proportion and indeed, what was right and wrong, that day.

Judge Rowlands said that Foster had been contacted by his partner claiming she had been threatened..

He did not know what she had said to him but it was clear she had been “difficult and stand-offish” and he said she directly caused the problem that evening.

Mr Walker and Mr Roberts were told by Foster’s partner to stop trimming the trees and they did.

But while they were tidying up the defendants turned up having been called by Foster’s partner and they were determined to “throw their weight around.”

Fortunately m Most of what happened was caught on CCTV footage.

“You were looking for trouble and you were looking to be violent,” said Judge Rowlands.

Foster lost all self-control, grabbed Mr Walker and punched him repeatedly until he fell over a low wall.

“You fell on top of him and even then you continued to punch him,” he said.

Williams joined in and took a kick or a stamp at the helpless victim’s head.

Prosecuting barrister Anna Price said that Mr Walker suffered a triple fracture to the left orbital floor and needed surgery, together with other injuries.

Mr Walker’s partner had taken legal advice, had asked Foster to have the trees cut back.

It was not done and she arranged for Mr Walker and Mr Roberts to carry out the work.

That evening in June Foster’s partner came out and asked them to stop and they did.

An hour or so later the defendants arrived and the attack took place.

Foster told police he had been in work when his partner called and said she had been threatened.

Duncan Bould, for Foster, said that while his client had previous convictions but he had been out of trouble for ten years, had transformed his life, and ran a successful building company which was flourishing with a number of pending contracts.

He employed six people, other sub-contractors relied upon him for work, and references spoke of the other side to his character. People expressed disbelief that he could have been involved in such an incident.

Many people were now dependent upon him, he said, and suggested a suspended sentence.

Phillip Tully, for Williams, said that his client worked for Foster and would not have been there but for the phone call that was received as they left work.

Out of a sense of loyalty and friendship he went to support Foster.

He did kick out with his foot on the spur of the moment but it was not clear if there had been contact.

The incident had clearly got out of hand and turned from a dispute to an altercation, he said.