Darts star sentenced after pub fire when two men died in unimaginable terror

Darts star Callum Goffin walked free from court today after a fire at his family's pub in which two men died.

Q-School winner Callum Goffin, 26, was given a suspended jail sentence and ordered to complete 200 hours of community service after a breach of fire safety regulations at the pub where he was the sole director.

The PDC Tour Card holder stood trial alongside his mum, Heather Goffin, 55, over the fatal fire at a working men's club in Morecambe in October of 2019.

After a propane gas canister ignited, two men couldn't escape the premises due to fire exits being locked and the venue having no working emergency lighting.

Preston Crown Court heard John McCartney, 60, and Philip 'Tony' Townsend, 70, died in "unimaginable terror". Heather Goffin was jailed for eight months on Monday (January 23) for "flagrant breaches of her responsibilities".

Callum Goffin, who was the director of the Gordon Working Men's Club business, walked free from court after receiving a six-month prison sentence, suspended for a year.

Prosecutors said black smoke filled each room on the floor in just a minute following the ignition, with CCTV played in court showing panic spreading among those customers and staff inside at the time.

Around 18 people were thought to have been present, including Callum Goffin who had been working behind the bar. Mr Townsend had been working as a handyman at the venue at the time, with Mr McCartney a customer.

Joseph Hart, prosecuting, said Callum Goffin ran the business as sole director in name only, with Heather Goffin actually responsible for the day-to-day running and administration of the pub.

She took full responsibility for the failure to follow safety standards, including the fire safety book not being updated in eight years, fire alarm batteries not being replaced for four years and not testing the fire alarm panel for three years.

Paul Humphries, defending Callum Goffin, said his client had not deliberately set out to avoid fire safety requirements. He urged the judge to impose a suspended sentence and mentioned his bright future as a touring darts player.

Heather Goffin pleaded guilty to 13 charges, while Callum Goffin admitted six, all of which related to fire safety regulations.

Judge Philip Parry said he was not sentencing for the deaths of the two men but instead for the breaches of the fire regulations, with a maximum of two years for each count.

Callum Goffin had been a surprise winner at UK Q-School, coming through via the order of merit in eighth after winning 62 legs and having a positive leg difference of 14.

The PDC has 128 Tour Card Holders each year, with a win at Q-School guaranteeing two years on the tour which offers up millions in prize money.

The PDC have been approached for comment.

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