Tribute to family man, 23, crushed by falling chimney

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The girlfriend of a labourer who died when he was crushed by a falling chimney while working on a demolition job has paid her tribute to her “best friend”.

Michelle Bedford’s partner Danny Hough had been hired as an emergency worker for the day in July 2013 and was asked to demolish some brickwork at a property in Batley, which caused the two tonne chimney to collapse on him. His employer, Nigel Parker was sentenced to two years in prison last week for manslaughter. He had also pleaded guilty to two serious breaches of health and safety.

Miss Bedford, 22, now has to bring the couple’s two-year-old son Michael up without his dad and says she feels the sentence was too low.

She said: “I know Nigel Parker expressed remorse but he could have prevented Danny’s death by issuing precautions. People have been given longer sentences for things that aren’t as bad.

“The case gives us closure to an extent because we know at least we got justice. Michael can grow up knowing that we got justice for his dad. I’ve been to every single court hearing so that when he asks what happened I’ve got the answers for him.”

Danny was described in court as a “hard-working individual” sentiments echoed by Michelle who saw his desperation to provide for his family.

“Danny was such a down to earth guy and not only my partner but my best friend. It was so hard for him to find work, but wherever he found it he damn well worked. He’d taken the labourer’s job because it would have helped us pay for a little camping holiday we wanted.”