Four women have narrowly dodged jail after beating up a cancer-suffering relative when a family feud erupted at a school car boot sale.

Linda Smith, 47, her daughter Eliza, 21, both of Woodmansterne Road, attacked their cousin Louise Green at St Philomena’s School, in Carshalton, in April 2009.

Minty Smith, 47, and daughter Rosie, 19, of The Pastures, Banstead, were part of the group and were also found guilty of actual bodily harm and affray.

Judge John Anderson, sitting at Croydon Crown Court on Monday, branded the quartet as “disgusting” before handing down a six-month suspended prison sentence.

He said: “You four women embarked on a screaming, hysterical attack in a public place.

"Your victim was recovering from cancer treament and was with her seven-year-old son.

“This was part of a long-running dispute. You ran and attacked her punching and pulling her hair, even when the police arrived you were still eager to continue.

“The only reason you are not going to prison is the minimal injuries.

"Having heard the evidence it is clear this was a set up and a pre-meditated assault.

“This was a disgusting spectacle and would have affected hundreds of people that day - all of you were utterly foul-mouthed and abusive.”

During the trial, the jury heard that Mrs Green’s husband, Terry, had approached the four defendants at the car boot sale after posters announcing his wife’s breast cancer were circulated around Carshalton.

Mr Green had spent six months in custody in 2008 after “wild and malicious” allegations were relayed to police by the Smith family.

It was after this spell in custody that the alleged poster campaign began against Mrs Green where crudely edited photographs of the mother-of-three with a breast cut out were posted in the surrounding area.

The Smiths, who must also pay court costs of £800, were ordered not to re-offend within an 18-month period or they would have to serve their suspended sentences.

Linda, Rosie and Eliza must complete 80 hours of unpaid work in the next 12 months and Minty was handed a 3-month curfew meang she must remain in her caravan between 7pm and 6am every day.

One of the defendants, Linda, tried to argue that she should not face unpaid work because she was illiterate - a request that was dismissed by Judge Anderson.