Tribute to a loving husband

Flowers left at the place where Chris Smith died
Flowers left at the place where Chris Smith died

A wife has paid tribute to her “loving and funny” husband who died after being hit by a car in Hebden Bridge.

Chris Smith, 63, of Bankfoot Terrace, Hebden Bridge, was killed last Thursday (October 23) after being hit by the car on Commercial Street, at the junction with Albert Street, at 7.30pm.

Police have arrested a 21-year-old Hebden Bridge man on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving, but have released him on bail until January.

Mr Smith’s wife, Claire, has spoken of her shock and devastation at her husband’s untimely death and appealed for anyone who witnessed the crash to contact the police.

Mrs Smith said: “He was a gem, just a funny guy. He loved everybody and he didn’t have a bad bone in his body. I’m just numb. I’m absolutely in shock. I’m absolutely broken.

“If anybody was witness to this incident could they please contact the police.”

Mrs Smith, who had only married her husband ten weeks ago, said they had planned to go on a honeymoon to Tenerife next year.

“He was someone who would do anything for anyone,” she said. “I still feel like he’s with me at home. He was the love of my life.”

A retired prison officer, Mr Smith was born in London and moved to Halifax 25 years ago. He met his wife in Halifax in 2010 and they were married at Spring Hall Registry Office in August.

Mrs Smith said on Thursday her husband had gone to get some money from the Lloyds Bank ATM on Albert Street at 7.15pm. He was on his way to Luddenden Foot where he played pool at the The Old Brandy Wine every Thursday.

Mr Smith was hit by a Volkswagen Polo as he walked towards Commercial Street at 7.30pm. The 21-year-old male driver of the Volkswagen fled the scene before later being arrested. He was released on bail on Friday.

Before allegedly hitting Mr Smith, he is believed to have hit two stationary cars on Albert Street at the junction with St George’s Square.

Police have also urged any witnesses to come forward.

Sergeant Ann Drury, from West Yorkshire Police’s Major Collision Inquiry Team, (MCIT) said: “Prior to striking the pedestrian the car collided with two other vehicles as it travelled in a north easterly direction along Albert Street.

“Shortly after the collision the vehicle was abandoned by the driver who left the area. Sadly, the pedestrian died of his injuries at the scene.

“I am appealing for any witnesses to the collision or anyone who saw the green Polo being driven prior to the collision to contact police.”

Floral tributes have been left at the scene of the crash. Well-wishers have also taken to social media to express their condolences to his family and friends.

Mr Smith leaves behind his wife, two daughters and two step children. A date for his funeral is still to be set.

An initial post mortem into the cause of Mr Smith’s death was carried out on Monday, and an inquest is set to be opened and adjourned later this week.

Any witnesses are asked to call the MCIT on 101 and quoting reference number 1389.