ENTERTAINMENT

Stoning yobs sought after the death of an angler may be as young as 11 years old


Two boys, eleven years old, are hunted by the police after throwing stones at the 66-year-old angler before he died of a heart attack at the 15th-century castle

  • Charles Hilder, 66, was found collapsed in the parking lot at Lullingstone Castle in Kent
  • The police want to speak to two boys who were involved in the incident last Thursday
  • Couple is said to have thrown stones at the father of five children after asking them to leave
  • They reportedly poached fish on the private lake and had a verbal argument

Police are looking for two poachers who may be only eleven years old after an angler on a Kent estate was allegedly thrown at stones and died of a heart attack.

66-year-old Charles Hilder was found collapsed in a parking lot at Lullingstone Castle near Eynsford last Thursday – and the police now want to speak to two boys involved.

The couple are said to have thrown stones at the father of five children, Mr. Hilder, after he asked them to leave the private lake, where they were believed to poach fish.

The father of five children, Charles Hilder, 66, was found collapsed in a parking lot at Lullingstone Castle near Eynsford last Thursday – and the police now want to speak to two boys involved

Mr. Hilder (right), who was named by other anglers, is said to have left behind his wife Lynne and five adult daughters. He is pictured on his daughter Claire's wedding day

Mr. Hilder (right), who was named by other anglers, is said to have left behind his wife Lynne and five adult daughters. He is pictured on his daughter Claire's wedding day

On returning to his car, the two teenagers and the angler were involved in another oral argument – and Mr. Hilder from Romford, Essex, collapsed and later died.

The police said they are continuing to investigate the "further circumstances" of Mr. Hilder's death and again appealed to the boys, aged 11 to 18, to report.

Officers and paramedics were sent last Thursday to the 15th-century estate where King Henry VIII once hunted after reports of a disturbance were received.

They tried to revive the angler with CPR, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Detectives have tried to determine whether the victim was actually hit by one of the rocks.

Lullingstone Castle near Eynsford in Kent is pictured last Friday as the police investigate the death

Lullingstone Castle near Eynsford in Kent is pictured last Friday as the police investigate the death

The father of five children died on the site of Lullingstone Castle in (pic)

The father of five died on the grounds of Lullingstone Castle in Eynsford, which was pictured last Friday

Mr. Hilder leaves behind Mrs. Lynne, 62, and five daughters. Local residents said anti-social behavior among youth gangs has increased in recent weeks.

Canisters of nitroxoxide, commonly known as laughing gas, were found in a box near the property, for fear that teenagers would have violated the blocking rules.

Mr. Hilder was a member of the Kingfisher Angling & Preservation Society, which was allowed to fish on the lake. Hours before his death, he helped fill it with trout.

The company's chairman, Mick Lee, said the exact circumstances of his death were unclear, but members believed that he died "after a confrontation with poachers."

Lullingstone is on the Darent River and has been the seat of the Hart Dyke family since 1361. The historic manor house on the site dates from 1497.

Forensics in waterproof clothing gathered evidence in the lake in Kent last Friday

Forensics in waterproof clothing gathered evidence in the lake in Kent last Friday

Police forensics gathered evidence near the lakeside boats on the premises last Friday

Police forensics gathered evidence near the lakeside boats on the premises last Friday

A bathhouse and an ice house that Queen Anne used in the 18th century are hidden on the site. The property also has a vineyard, a Tudor gatehouse, and a chapel.

His heir is Tom Hart Dyke, 44, a gardener who was kidnapped by guerrillas in Colombia in 2000 in search of rare orchids and detained for nine months.

He is the cousin of British actress and comedian Miranda Hart from Call the Midwife. The castle is normally open three days a week from spring to autumn.

It is currently closed due to the pandemic, but anglers were allowed to return after Boris Johnson lifted restrictions on some sports.

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