THE community in Baildon gathered yesterday to pay tribute to murdered toddler Star Hobson with a candlelit vigil at Robert’s Park.

The family of Star, along with dozens of friends and neighbours from Baildon, gathered by the bandstand in the Saltaire park to light candles and pause to remember 16-month-old Star.

The tribute followed the conclusion of the eight-week trial into her murder which concluded at Bradford Crown Court last week.

Savannah Brockhill, 28, the girlfriend of Star’s mother Frankie Smith, was jailed for life, with a minimum term of 25 years, after being found guilty of murdering Star on September 22, 2020.

Smith, 20, was cleared of murder and manslaughter but was found guilty of allowing her daughter’s death, and jailed for eight years.

Prior to the vigil, which took place at 4.30pm, the family gathered in Higher Coach Road at the north of the park to greet the Santa sleigh which toured Baildon yesterday.

This year, in tribute to Star, organiser Kirsty Nettleton arranged for a star light to be fixed to the back of Santa’s sleigh.

When the sleigh arrived, family thanked Santa for his tribute to beloved Star and posed for photos, as well as consoling one another after they received closure almost 15 months on from Star’s tragic passing.

Star’s great-grandparents Annetta Smith and David Fawcett - who cared for Star for 10 weeks while she was a baby - were joined by other family members including Star’s grandmother Yvonne Spendley, auntie Alicia Szepler, and uncle Ben Smith in paying tribute to Star at the grandstand in Robert’s Park.

Speaking from the grandstand, Annetta Smith said: “Thank you all for coming, we really appreciate it.

“I know you will all never forget Star, we certainly won’t. Thank you all for coming to remember Star.”

David Fawcett added: “You have all been amazing throughout the trial and since Star passed away.

“You have all been behind us, without you we would have been gone; you have been the strength behind us.

“You have been amazing, thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”

Candles spelling out Star’s name were lit, alongside other lights and photos of Star and messages to her.

Speaking after the ceremony, Mr Fawcett said the support his family have received from the communities in Baildon, Shipley and in Keighley have been “incredible”.

He added: “Seeing people turn out for Star has been wonderful.

“Since the trial we’ve all been pretty down. Annetta and I had a little trip up to Keighley to see the tributes where Star finally passed away and people have been really good there putting flowers out.

“We heard this was happening Sunday afternoon so we managed to get down with all the family and it was brilliant.

“We saw the sleigh going past, and giving her the candlelit vigil.

“The community have been wonderful, everyone has been behind us and backing us up.

“People have been doing that ever since Star passed away.

“We had a balloon release on November 13 and I thought with this might be a bit quieter and again everyone has got behind us and we were really pleased with it.”