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  1. ITV Report

Leicester City helicopter crash: One year on

  • It's been one year since the night a helicopter belonging to the Chairman of Leicester City Football Club crashed outside the stadium.
  • The five people on board the helicopter died in the crash - the club chairman, Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, pilot Eric Swaffer and his partner Izabela Lechowicz, and two of Khun Vichai's staff, Nusara Suknamai and Kaveporn Punpare.
  • In the year since the crash, Leicester has mourned, paid tribute and united, to honour the legacy created by the club chairman.
Tributes laid outside the King Power Stadium following the helicopter crash Credit: PA
  • What happened?

On the night of Saturday 27th October 2018, a helicopter belonging to the chairman of Leicester City Football Club took off from the pitch in the King Power Stadium after a match.

On board was the club chairman, Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, pilot Eric Swaffer and his partner Izabela Lechowicz, and two of Khun Vichai's staff, Nusara Suknamai and Kaveporn Punpare.

Shortly after taking off at 7.37pm,the helicopter began to rapidly descend and dropped out of the sky, crashing onto a clearing next to the King Power Stadium.

All five people on board died in the crash.

All five people on board the helicopter died in the crash. Credit: ITV Central
  • What has happened in the year since the crash?

Leicester has mourned, paid tribute and united, to honour the legacy created by the club chairman, Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.

Leicester City Football Club chairman, Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, was one of five people killed when his helicopter crashed shortly after taking off from the King Power stadium. Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Khun Vichai's son, Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha succeeded his father, as the chairman of Leicester City Football Club in August, while his brother, Apichet took the role of Vice Chairman.

Vichai donated £2million towards the Leicester Children's Hospital Appeal in 2016 - the charity will now name the new children's intensive care units in his honour.

Thousands of Leicester City fans walked through the city last weekend, singing Vichai's name through the streets, marching to remember the five who died.

Floral tributes left since the accident will be composted and used in a memorial garden. Credit: ITV Central

A memorial garden will open this weekend on the site of the accident, next to the King Power stadium, in honour of Vichai and the four who died.

All floral tributes left since the accident will be composted and used to support the growth and development of the new planting scheme within the garden.

The family of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha pay their respects after the crash Credit: PA
  • What happened in Leicester right after the crash?

Leicester was thrust into the world's spotlight for weeks - fans, players and clubs across the world sending tributes, paying their respects and thousands visiting the King Power stadium.

Fans organised a 5000/1 march through the city, ahead of Leicester’s match against Burnley, their first home game since the crash.

Credit: PA

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who were friends of Khun Vichai, visited the site of the crash at the end of November, greeted by Vichai's family.

Prince William spoke at the King Power Stadium to supporters, club staff, 999 employees and the relatives of those who died.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who were friends of Khun Vichai, visited the site of the crash Credit: PA

Tens of thousands floral tributes were laid outside the King Power stadium following the crash.

They were respectfully moved to a special memorial close to the crash site in November.

Leicester City footballers paid their tributes to their boss outside the King Power stadium. Credit: PA
  • What caused the crash?

Initial findings in the investigation found that the crash was caused by a pin that had come loose in the tail rotor control mechanism.

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) published its first report on the crash in November 2018.

The full findings of the investigation are expected to be published later this year. Credit: PA

The wreckage of the aircraft was taken away from outside the ground to the AAIB's specialist investigation site in Farnborough on 1 November.

Safety checks were ordered on the tail rotors of helicopters similar to the aircraft that crashed.

The full findings of the investigation are expected to be published later this year.

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