New landlord of Corner Pin in Chellaston brutally attacked by thugs

This post first appeared on Derby Telegraph. Read the original article.

The new landlord of a troubled Derby pub has told how he was left needing hospital treatment after being brutally attacked for ten minutes by a group of thugs.

Craig Smith was taken to hospital after the incident at the Corner Pin in Chellaston on Thursday at around 9pm.

The 36-year-old said trouble started when he ordered a group of young men who had broken a mirror in the toilets to get out of the pub.

Mr Smith said they refused and “chaos erupted”. He said: “We had a few older guys drinking and having a quiet time and a bunch of younger lads in at the same time.

"The young ones smashed a mirror in the men’s toilets and I didn't want any trouble. I asked them five times to get out because this sort of behaviour is not welcome. The fifth time they went for me and attacked me. It was brutal.

Craig Smith inside the pub

Craig Smith inside the pub

“They repeatedly punched me and I fell back and banged my head on the floor. I lost count of the amount of times they hit me. Some other customers in the pub heard the commotion and also got involved and tried to get them off me. It was terrible.

“One of them threw a pool ball at me which struck me hard on my back and then more punches rained down. It was horrific. The whole attack lasted around ten minutes.”

Mr Smith was taken to the Royal Derby Hospital where he was treated with several stitches, he also needed treatment for scratches and bruises to his head, back and neck.

The Corner Pin was the scene of a major police incident in December 2015 when it was forced to close following a 50-man brawl which left one man in hospital in a critical condition.

Chellaston residents said the pub has had a negative reputation for many years but Mr Smith said he was adamant the pub could be a place for the community to enjoy.

Police at the scene of a major incident at the pub in 2015 in which around 50 people were involved in a brawl.

Police at the scene of a major incident at the pub in 2015 in which around 50 people were involved in a brawl.

He said: “I will not take rubbish from anybody. I want people to see this pub as being a safe and welcoming place. I want it to be somewhere where families can come and relax and not be fearful something like this will happen.

“People need to realise that I will change the reputation of the pub. It will be a nice place and part of the community. The people that attacked me might think they have won the battle, but I will win the war.”

Mr Smith added: “I got the police in straight away. They are investigating. I want these people to stay out, they are not welcome.

“I was in hospital for four hours. I hope people see that this sends out a message that I won’t tolerate any trouble. I’m going to sort it out.”

Mr Smith said he wanted to thank customers who tried to drag the thugs off him during the incident. He said: “I want to say a huge thank you to them. They were great. I know the vast majority of people want this to be a success and a nice place for people to relax, enjoy themselves. Like a pub should be.”

A spokeswoman for Derbyshire police said the force was aware of the incident. She asked for anybody with information to contact them on 101.