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  1. ITV Report

Parents 'devastated' by death of Durham student daughter

Olivia Burt Photo: Durham Constablary

The parents of a student who died outside a Durham club are “totally devastated and heartbroken” by the loss of their “beautiful daughter”.

Olivia Burt, from Hampshire, suffered fatal head injuries in an incident outside Missoula nightclub on Wednesday night.

Door staff and the ambulance service and police tried to revive her but the 20-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.

Olivia’s parents released a statement today paying tribute to their daughter, who was in her first year at Durham University, studying natural sciences.

It was also announced today that a candlelit vigil will be held in memory of her this evening.

Olivia's parents said: “We are totally devastated and heartbroken by the loss of our beautiful daughter, Olivia.

“She was a wonderful young woman and our words cannot truly express how much we miss her.

“We request that we be allowed to grieve in private and will not be releasing any further statements”.

A joint investigation into the circumstances surrounding Olivia’s death has been launched by Durham Constabulary and Durham County Council.

The incident happened during a popular student night at the Walkergate venue and several hundred people are thought to have been queuing outside the premises at the time.

Police have spoken to a "large number" of people who were in the area on Wednesday night but have launched a fresh appeal for those who were nearest to Olivia at the time of the tragedy to come forward.

Detective Inspector Andy Smith, of Durham Constabulary’s Major Crime Team, said: “This was a tragic incident and the whole focus of our investigation at this time is to find out exactly what happened to Olivia.

“We have now spoken to a large number of people who were there on the night, both those working in the area and those who were queueing to get into the nightclub.

“Officers have also examined CCTV footage from the scene, showing the moments leading up to the incident."

He added: “We appreciate there were potentially several hundred people outside the premises, but we are appealing for witnesses to come forward from among those who were closest to Olivia at the time of the incident and saw what took place”.

Any witnesses who were close to the incident at the time are asked to ring Durham Police on 101.

The vigil will take place at 5pm today in the Castle Courtyard.

An email forwarded to students with a message from the Master of Castle said: "All of those who knew Olivia or who had any connection to her are welcome at this vigil".