Friends pay tribute to popular boxing star William Richardson after fatal stabbing
Friends of stabbing victim William Richardson have paid tribute to the popular boxer turned coach.
Mr Richardson, 34, of Elizabeth Terrace, Maryport, took up boxing at Workington Town Boys' and Girls' Club in his 20s.
Phill Dryden, club chairman, said: "What happened is shocking, it's such a big loss.
"I would like to offer our deepest sympathy and prayers to Will's family, friends and colleagues. Will was a good boxer at the club and trained hard and fought hard. He will be a big miss to the boxing community."
He added that Mr Richardson represented the club for a number of years and was an inspiration to younger members, as well as being a good friend and a true gentleman.
Boxer Darren Askew met Mr Richardson at the Workington club as a teenager.
He said: "Everyone said what a genuinely nice guy he was. He was very well respected."
Mr Richardson was trained by coaches Martin Sewell and Dave Tennyson.
Mr Tennyson said: "He was a lovely guy, hard working and devoted to his family. He sparred with most clubs in Cumbria. I remember once we were boxing in Grange Over Sands and his opponent was a Scottish guy. It was a really gruelling match but he ended up being almost best friends with his opponent. He was just that sort of friendly guy. What happened is unreal, it's senseless."
Mr Sewell, who now coaches at Maryport Amateur Boxing Club where Mr Richardson later boxed, said: "He had a lovely personality and he was tough as old boots. He absolutely loved the sport, that's all he talked about.
"He popped into the club from time to time and he also used to come with his boys.
"He would box at the drop of a hat, he was constantly fit. He was a genuinely lovely lad and full of life."
Mr Richardson was a keen boxer and the first member of the Maryport Boxing Club to win a championship.
Coach Darren Martin said: "He won the North West Regional Belt.
"But William was not just a good boxer. He was a credit to the club and a good man. Our club is devastated and, on behalf of members, I want to express our sympathy to all the family.
"We are really devastated by what has happened. He will be missed."
Mr Richardson had also taken part in Clash Of The Titans events.
Promoter Dave Straughton said: "It's heartbreaking. He was a lovely lad, happy-go-lucky. It's been a massive shock. Everyone I know in the boxing community is gutted."
Mr Richardson was stabbed in Senhouse Street, Maryport, in the early hours of Tuesday. He died at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle on Wednesday.