THE family of a 14-year-old girl who died after being struck by a minibus on the A590 in Furness have paid tribute to a 'very beautiful girl'.
Bethany Louise Crook, from Lindal-in-Furness, was rushed to Furness General Hospital after the collision, between Lindal and Crossamoor, at around 6pm yesterday but medics were unable to save her.
In a statement released via Cumbria Police this morning, her parents said: “Bethany was a very happy girl who enjoyed spending time with her family and friends.
“Last weekend she was very excited to see One Direction Live. She was a very beautiful girl.
“It hasn't really sunk in properly yet that she has gone so, of course, there are lots of tears.
“She has received lots of tributes on Facebook from lots of people.
“They are very hard to read but also very nice to see what a very popular girl she was. Missing her so much.”
Ulverston Victoria High School, where Bethany was a pupil, said the school community was 'devastated' to hear of her tragic death.
A statement on the school's website read: “We cannot understand the awful tragedy that has happened to Bethany and which has engulfed her family.
“Bethany’s many friends in school, her teachers, our governors and all our school community are devastated at the news.
“She was a quiet, responsible and hard-working student, described by her teachers as being wonderful.
“She was extremely popular and made a great contribution to the life of our school, particularly in the performing arts, but just by being Bethany.
“All our thoughts are with Bethany’s family."
Investigations are continuing into the tragic collison this morning as police released more details about the minibus involved.
It was carrying seven Windermere School pupils, all aged between 16 and 17, to an event in Barrow.
Neither the passengers or the driver, a 26-year-old Windermere man, were injured.
Jane Scott, head of admissions and marketing at Windermere School, told the Gazette: “I am very sorry to say that a school minibus was involved in an accident yesterday evening.
“We can confirm that a minibus from Windermere School was involved in a collision with a pedestrian on the A590 near Lindal at around 6pm yesterday evening.
“Whilst neither the driver nor any of the passengers, who were pupils from Windermere School, were injured in the collision, tragically the pedestrian, a 15-year-old girl, subsequently died of her injuries. We extend our deepest sympathies to her family and friends.
“We will, of course, be offering the police any assistance necessary in their investigations into the incident.
“I have given this very sad news to the school this morning and we are offering pastoral support to any student or member of staff who would find this helpful, especially those students who were on the minibus."
Cumbria Police said no arrests had been made in connection with the collision.
The road was closed for around five hours while officers from Cumbria's roads policing and collision investigation units carried out initial investigations.
Drivers travelling between Dalton and Ulverston were told to avoid the area and use alternative routes.
Bethany's family are being supported by family liaison officers.
The office of South and East Cumbria Coroner Ian Smith has been informed.