Seven teenagers accused of the murder of a father-of-two have denied the charge.
Danny Humble, 35, was allegedly attacked as he walked home after a night out with his partner in Cramlington, Northumberland, in May.
Despite the efforts of the emergency services and his girlfriend at the scene, he died in hospital the following day.
The seven males were subsequently arrested and were later charged with murder.
They all appeared together in the dock at Newcastle Crown Court today and each pleaded not guilty.
Welder Danny Humble, 35, suffered a serious head injury after he was attacked in the early hours of May 29 in the Romsey Close area of Cramlington, Northumberland
Alistair Dickson (left) and Ethan Scott (right) pictured in handcuffs being remanded in custody at North Tyneside Magistrates Court today
Bailey Wilson pictured in handcuffs being remanded in custody at North Tyneside Magistrates Court today
A trial, which could last between six and eight weeks, will start on April 27 next year.
A further pre-trial hearing will take place on February 25.
Alistair Dickson, Bailey Wilson and Ethan Scott, who are all 18, plus one of the 17-year-olds, have been granted conditional bail.
The other three defendants, who are all 17 and cannot be named, are on bail or remanded to local authority accommodation.
Danny, who lived in Cramlington, leaves behind two young children, his parents, a girlfriend and two brothers.
His heartbroken mother, Deb Humble, said: 'Danny was a devoted dad. He was a welder by trade and took great pride in his work but his first priority and most important job was always being a father.
'He was a family man and very close to his two brothers, the Humble brothers - the 'Three Musketeers' as they were known to us.
'He was also a great son, someone to be proud of, and a very loving boyfriend.
'Though he loved Cramlington, he was born in Newcastle and was a Geordie lad through and through; meaning another great love of his life was, of course, Newcastle United.
'He was so happy to have passed on his love for Newcastle United to his kids and swelled with pride at their interest in his team.'
She added: 'We are lost without him - we are broken.
'Compassionate, hilarious and a good friend, he will be missed by so, so many and his absence leaves a hole in so many lives.
'If anyone has any information about what happened that night, please come forward and speak to police.'