Mural and bench unveiled in memory of murdered Doncaster boxer Tom Bell

A mural and memorial bench were unveiled at the former gym of murdered boxer Tom Bell thanks to a fundraising campaign just days after his killers were jailed.

Wednesday, 21st August 2019, 09:43 am

Tom’s devoted girlfriend Chloe Wright and cousin Jimmy Hanrahan launched an online appeal back in January after the boxer was shot in a pub.

Work on the mural and bench finished on Monday and his mum Tracy Langley saw it for the first time on Tuesday – just four days after his killers Scott Gocoul and Joseph Bennia were jailed for a total of 50 years.

Tracy said: “It was a bit of shocker last week because it’s like an emptiness and a case of where do we go from here. We’ve all felt the same.

Pictured by the mural and bench are Tom's sister Charity, aged 17, with nephews Jake Edgington, aged 12, Jack O'Neill, aged nine and Josh Hynes, aged 11. Picture: Marie Caley

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

“I spent all weekend just sat on the sofa and then at night I’d cry for my baby. i think it’s because the trial has taken up so much of our lives.”

The mural masks the wall of the Freedom Boxing Club Gym, in Lindholme and the granite bench sits on Indian stone outside the centre.

Promising boxer Tom Bell, aged 21, who won all of his six professional fights and was tipped for future success, was shot dead through the window of the Maple Tree pub in Balby, Doncaster, in January.

Gunman Scott Gocoul, 30, formerly of Maulson Drive, Hull, was jailed for life and ordered to serve a minimum of 33 years behind bars after being found guilty of murder on Thursday.

His accomplice Joseph Bennia, 28, formerly of Burton Avenue, Doncaster, was found guilty of manslaughter and locked up for 17 years for his role in the death – providing the weapon used to kill Tom and driving Gocoul to the pub to carry out the attack.

During a two month trial at Sheffield Crown Court, jurors were told that Gocoul killed Tom when a long-standing feud escalated.

Both Gocoul and Bennia blamed each other for the shooting but Gocoul’s DNA was found on the trigger of the gun used in the attack.

Tracy said: “I am happy with the sentences because we knew from day one that Scott was the shooter and he is a very dangerous man so he shouldn’t be on the streets.

“I don’t think closure is the right word but I think the support has been fantastic and, of course, it has helped. There’s been plenty of people offering to help, including people we have not seen for years – it’s rebuilt friendships.”