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Tributes paid to teenager who drowned in reservoir

Thomas Barton Photo: Lancashire Police

A 15-year-old Lancashire boy who drowned in a reservoir was a "very likeable" young man who was full of fun, his headteacher has said.

Thomas Barton, from Coppull, got into difficulties at Yarrow Valley Country Park in Chorley on Sunday.

Police were called to Birkacre Brow at about 7.40pm and were supported by Lancashire Fire and Rescue, Northwest Ambulance Service, a mountain rescue team and park rangers.

Four of his friends were reportedly stranded on a floating jetty but there was no sign of the missing youngster when emergency services arrived.

The water was searched by police divers who found Thomas's body shortly after 11pm.

Detective Inspector Jo Keay said: "Despite the best efforts of all the people involved in the rescue operation, sadly a young boy has lost his life - and it goes to illustrate the dangers of swimming in open water.

"This is an absolutely tragic accident and our thoughts are with Thomas's family at this incredibly sad time."

Paying tribute to him, his headteacher at Holy Cross Catholic High School, Wendy White, said: "Tom will be a huge loss to his family, friends and the school community of Holy Cross Catholic High School.

"He was a terrifically loyal friend and a very likeable young man who was always ready to help others. He had a heart of gold and was recently part of a group who raised over #200 for local charities.

"He was full of fun and a constant source of trivia and kept his form tutor updated on all the latest happenings in the soap operas."