THE family of a father-of-three who died following an incident at a pub have spoken of their devastation.
South Yorkshire Police have launched a murder investigation after Robert David Hurdley, 45, died after trouble broke out at the Don John Hotel pub in Maltby.
It is believed a number of people were involved in the incident on Sunday evening, which left Mr Hurdley suffering a serious head injury.
The popular rugby coach was taken to Rotherham District General Hospital on Sunday evening and pronounced dead shortly after arrival.
Mr Hurdley, of Dinnington, was married to Alison, had three children and also worked as a store director at Specsavers, the Free Press understands.
His family have released a statement and are urging people to come forward with information to help the police investigation.
It read: “Our family have been devastated by the loss of Robert.
“He was a popular, lively and successful family man and the father of three beautiful young children.
“He had spent the day coaching the Dinnington Boys Rugby Team and shared that evening having a drink with friends. He is deeply loved by us all. I would ask that anyone with information please contact the police.”
Following his shocking death, Dinnington Rugby Union Football Club - where Mr Hurdley was a member - also penned a message on their team’s website paying tribute to the respected family man. It said: “It is with great sadness that DRUFC have to announce the death of club stalwart Rob Hurdley. Rob has been a player, coach, sponsor and has always played a major role within the club.
“Everyone associated with DRUFC would like to offer their condolences to Rob’s family and close friends. A real gentleman.”
A 30-year-old Maltby man was arrested on suspicion of murder has now been charged and remanded in custody until his next court appearance.
He was due to appear before Rotherham magistrates yesterday.
The incident happened at around 10pm on Sunday.
The investigation is ongoing, a spokesman for South Yorkshire Police has confirmed.
Officers want to speak to everyone there at the time trouble broke out at the High Street pub but they also want to speak to anybody else on nights out in the other pubs in Maltby on Sunday night.
They are being urged to call South Yorkshire Police on 101 quoting incident number 1242 of October 14. Alternatively, people with details on the incident can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.