A FATHER had his finger bitten off in a brawl with another parent as they waited for their kids' nativity play to begin.
Parents intervened to pull the men apart as they fought at Harton Primary School, in South Shields, South Tyneside, before the children’s performance.
One witness, who did not wish to be identified, said: '’The two men started to fight in front of all the mums and dads. One bit the finger off the other and spat the blood out like an animal.’’
The 32 year-old victim was taken to hospital where his hand was treated. A 39-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of assault and bailed.
A spokesman for the school said the incident was not witnessed by any of the children, who were preparing for the play.
The fight broke out at about 1.50pm on Wednesday, while parents waited in a room at the school for the nativity to start.
Onlookers told of their horror after one bit the finger off the other and “spat blood out like an animal”.
Another father, who witnessed the fight, added: “We were all waiting in a room for the show to start. I’d got there early to make sure I got a good seat.
“I heard a bit of noise from the back of the room and looked around to see what was happening. A man in a white hat stormed in and went for another dad.
"They were fighting and blood was flying. I didn’t see it, but I heard that a finger was bitten off.
“The fight was broken up by teachers quite quickly and the man in the hat disappeared.”
One mother said: “I can’t believe that it happened - a school is not the time or place to be fighting. The kids might not have been there but they will have heard what happened and I’m sure they will all be affected.
“If you have a problem with someone deal with it in an adult way, not by fighting at a school. You can understand children fighting in the playground, but not parents.”
A spokesman for the school said: “We are assisting the police with their enquiries and can confirm that the incident was not witnessed by any of the children, nor were they at risk at any time.”
A police spokesman said: “On Tuesday at about 1.50pm an incident occurred at Harton Primary School.
“There was a disturbance between two male parents, and one sustained an injury to his hand which required medical treatment.
“The other man was arrested by police for assault and released on bail.”