Friends rally round to raise cash for Mark Denton’s funeral as pair face murder charge

Mark Denton
Mark Denton

TWO men will appear before a judge at Teesside Crown Court on Tuesday after being charged with the murder of former Hartlepool boxer Mark Denton.

David Sowerby and Anthony Middleton appeared for less than a minute in the dock at Teesside Magistrates’ Court, in Middlesbrough on Saturday, and spoke only to confirm their names as a family member watched on from the public gallery.

Both wearing black t-shirts, Sowerby, 23, of Allerton Close, Hartlepool, and Middleton, 21, of Bruntoft Avenue, Hartlepool, were told because of the nature of the charges facing them that they would appear at Teesside Crown Court on Tuesday.

No bail application was made for either of the accused and they were remanded in custody until they go to crown court tomorrow.

Mark was pronounced dead at James Cook University Hospital, in Middlesbrough, in the early hours of New Year’ Day after being attacked at a party in Hutton Avenue, Hartlepool.

Hundreds of tributes have been paid to the 31-year-old on a dedicated Facebook page, while friends and family members have been laying flowers at the address in Hutton Avenue since New Year’s Day.

A fundraising page was set up on Saturday by friends who have pledged to try and raise £10,000 to help Mark’s family.

A mesage on the page reads: “As friends of Mark and his family we are wanting to help with costs of his funeral so its one less thing for them to worry about at this tragic time, so here is your chance to help! Every contribution how ever big or small will be very appreciated. So lets give Mark the send off he deserves!!”

Within 24 hours the page, which can be found at, had raked in more than £5,000 from almost 200 well-wishers.