THE STUNNED community of Burton in Lonsdale is in mourning this week after a helicopter crashed in a field, leaving two people dead.

Police have officially named the two fatalities as local man Ian Macdonald, 66 who was piloting the aircraft, and 16-year-old German national Admarsu Birhan.

The 2016 Guimbal Cabri G2 helicopter was returning from Barrow on a leisure flight when disaster struck, and the helicopter crashed on the outskirts of the Rivers Edge Holiday Park on Bentham Road, near the village, just before midday on Monday, June 21.

READ MORE: Fatalities confirmed in helicopter crash - latest updates

Around 30 emergency services vehicles including fire engines, ambulances, police, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance, and a police helicopter were dispatched to the scene, which was cordoned off as UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch began to conduct a detailed investigation as to how and why the crash happened.

The Westmorland Gazette: INVESTIGATION: A fire engine blocks the roadINVESTIGATION: A fire engine blocks the road

Police released an immediate statement after the crash that "strongly urged" the public to avoid the area.

The passenger, Admarsu Birham, a student from Germany, was staying with local man Andy Ive, and his family.

On Monday afternoon, Mr Ive said on Facebook:

"I need to let you all know that Ian Macdonald and the young German student staying with me were both killed in the (helicopter) crash.

"Families have been told. We are devastated."

Councillor Stuart Handley, ward councillor for Burton in Lonsdale, paid tribute to the victims:

"My condolences go to the family of Ian Macdonald and also the German exchange student’s family.

"It is a tragedy which the whole community feels.

"Ian hadn’t been living in the village for a very long time but he made himself very well known within the community.

"I have known Ian for around five years and classed him as a friend.

"He would call me up if I saw him out and about and I’d go and have a word with him, or in the shop if he was having a coffee or a pint down the local."

The Westmorland Gazette: AIRCRAFT: Air ambulances attended the sceneAIRCRAFT: Air ambulances attended the scene

Cllr Peter Thompson, chair of Burton in Lonsdale Parish Council said he was devastated at the news:

"We only learned officially last night who the two were who were killed and it has shocked everyone in this close-knit community.

"Ian Macdonald was a great support to the village. He had done a lot of work with the village shop.

Mr Macdonald's partner Julia Smith shared an image of him online after the crash, and her mum, Audrey, wrote:

"With great sadness, my daughter Julia's partner Ian has been killed in a helicopter accident on Monday, June 20 - love from all of us."