Page last updated at 15:31 GMT, Tuesday, 25 May 2010 16:31 UK

Two pupils and man killed in Cumbria bus crash named


Head teacher Michael Chapman: 'Feelings are indescribable'

Two teenagers who died when a school bus crashed into a car in Cumbria have been named by police as Kieran Goulding, 15, and Chloe Walker, 16.

Patrick Short, 68, who was driving a Honda Civic car, was also killed.

Nine children remain in hospital, two in a serious condition, after the 49-seater taking pupils home from Keswick School crashed on the A66 on Monday.

Police revealed Chloe was marking her birthday on Monday. It emerged she had a brother who died in 2007, aged 15.

Patrick Short - Pic: Cumbria Police
Mr Short was a "generous, principled man"

Head teacher Michael Chapman said staff and pupils had been left devastated by the tragedy, which happened near Bassenthwaite Lake.

A special school assembly was held to remember the dead youngsters.

Chloe Walker's brother Jordan died in April 2007 from the degenerative condition sanfilippo, which was diagnosed when he was seven-years-old. It is understood their parents only had two children.

Speaking about double tragedy hitting the Walker family, Mr Chapman said: "I cannot begin to describe how I would feel in those circumstances."

The coach was carrying children back to their homes in and around Cockermouth, about 13 miles away, when it crashed on Monday.

Police are investigating suggestions that the coach, which was travelling on the correct side of the road, swerved to avoid an oncoming car which had crossed the central line.

Witnesses spoke of hearing "a loud bang" as the coach ended up on its side.

By Nick Ravenscroft, BBC north of England correspondent

It's perhaps understandable that the head teacher should say they'll try to carry on as normal.

In fact some of the pupils at Keswick School have no choice but to sit their English Lit A-level exam as planned.

But those killed or seriously injured in Monday's crash will very likely be known to them personally, or are perhaps the younger siblings of their own school friends.

Normality it may be on the surface, but underneath it feels very raw.

Cumbria Police said 25 other people were treated for injuries, most of them children. Their injuries ranged from cuts to fractures and spinal injuries.

The coach driver, a 63-year-old man from Egremont who worked for J.B. Pickthall in Rowrah, west Cumbria, is in a stable condition in hospital.

Police said children from the same school who were travelling on a minibus behind the coach rushed to help their classmates.

Ch Supt Steve Johnson praised their actions, saying those who helped had "not thought about themselves".

"They went straight to the aid of their friends and colleagues and did an incredible job," he said.

Describing the teenagers who died, Mr Chapman said: "All I can say is they were Keswick School children and that makes them the most wonderful children in the world."

Tributes were also paid to Mr Short from Braithwaite, the car driver killed in the crash.

His wife Wendy described him as a "generous, principled man".

"He loved me and the family and was committed to his work with Barnardo's. As a parish councillor, Chair of Cumbria Rural Choirs and a former church warden, he was dedicated to the local community," she said.

Pupils praised for bus crash aid

Mr Chapman added that three teachers who were at the scene looked "very, very shaken" on Monday night but were back in work on Tuesday.

He said his feelings about the crash were "indescribable".

"We have a very large number of distressed children, we have a very large number of distressed staff, some of whom were down at the scene yesterday afternoon. We are all going to pull together today," he said.

"The children as ever were surrounded by their friends and people who wished to help and that is how it will be today."

He said the details of the crash were "very sketchy" and it was "a sight that very few students wish to see again in their lives".

Ch Supt Johnson added: "It's too early to talk about what caused this accident.

"As the incident commander, I can't help but be impressed that at a time of great need the emergency services and the community in West Cumbria once again have come together and done their utmost to try and help people and preserve life."

Crash scene
The bus was taking children home from Keswick School

The A66 was closed until 0300 BST on Tuesday to allow a thorough investigation of the crash scene.

Police urged people not to attempt to leave floral tributes at the crash scene.

Crosthwaite church in Keswick and nearby Braithwaite church had opened to receive flowers.

Moira Swann, director of children's services at Cumbria County Council, said her department would offer "all the help and support we can to the children, families and staff affected".

Educational psychologists were going into the school, which has about 1,000 pupils aged between 11 and 18, to offer support.

Print Sponsor

Three killed in school bus crash
24 May 10 |  Cumbria

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific