Two men accused of conspiring to defraud Edge Hill University in Ormskirk out of £500,000 denied the allegations against them.

West Kirby man Robert Smedley and Christopher Joynson, from Northumberland, both entered not guilty pleas and are to face trial in September.

They are accused of conspiring to defraud the university between September 1, 2009 and August 31, 2014, by Joynson submitting invoices for consultancy work which they knew to be false and which were then authorised for payment by Smedley and subsequently paid.

51-year-old Smedley, of Grange Farm Crescent, West Kirby,and Joynson, 33, of Clocktower Apartments at Bamburgh Castle, Northumberland, were both further remanded on bail by Judge Stephen Everett to await their trial beginning on September 12.