Chris Henchliffe's mum launches petition to make Chesterfield's nightlife 'safe again' - after fresh tragedy over weekend

The mother of a Chesterfield soldier who was killed by a single punch has launched an online petition calling for the town’s nightlife to be made ‘safe again’.

Tuesday, 11th February 2020, 5:00 pm
Updated Tuesday, 11th February 2020, 9:27 pm

Yvonne Henchliffe’s son Chris died after an altercation outside the town’s Pomegranate Theatre in summer 2016.

It was a crime which shocked the town and a crown court jury ruled the 26-year-old dad was unlawfully killed.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Yvonne Henchliffe with her son, Chris, who died in 2016.

Yvonne's petition – which recommends that licensing hours be reduced – comes after 23-year-old Joe Robotham, who was also a soldier, was allegedly struck with a bottle over his head outside Vibe on Holywell Street during a night out at around 3.50am on Saturday.

He sadly died in hospital the following day.

Connor Rose, 24, of no fixed abode, was charged with murder and possession of an offensive weapon following the incident.

Yvonne told the Derbyshire Times: “What happened to Joe over the weekend has brought back so many horrific memories.

“My thoughts are with his loved ones at this tragic time.

“I hope this petition makes a difference.

“These tragic incidents in Chesterfield have got to stop.”

Yvonne’s petition – which can be signed here – states: “We believe that extended hours licences directly contribute to increased crime and anti-social behaviour by encouraging people to drink more and stay out for a longer period of time.

“A number of bars in Chesterfield have extended hours licences, meaning people can continue to drink sometimes up until 6am.

“We believe that a licence limit of around 1.30am to 2am would allow police, door staff and CCTV operators to monitor popular areas and prevent further tragedies.

“People are loading up on alcohol prior to a night out and aren’t entering the town centre until sometimes 10pm onwards to continue with ‘happy hour’ where cheap shots and drink offers are used as an incentive to go into a venue.

“Please sign this petition, which we hope will bring licensing issues to the forefront and lead to a review in the way in which the bars operate, making them take more responsibility for incidents happening outside their premises.

“We need to create a safer town centre.”