'He had no chance to fight for his life', Family of 12-year-old killed in SnowDome incident say

The family of a 12-year-old boy who was killed in a SnowDome ski incident have said he "never had a chance to fight for his life".

Louis Watkiss' family said "he didn't die on his terms", as they launch a new fundraising appeal to help cover the cost of an investigation.

Louis, of Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, died after being seriously injured at the indoor ski centre in Tamworth, Staffordshire on September 24.

His family said he died when his sledge collided with a skier during a friend's birthday party at SnowDome.

The 12-year-old was treated by first-aiders and paramedics from West Midlands Ambulance Service.

Crews from two air ambulances also attended, but despite their best efforts nothing could be done to save him.

Louis' family have launched their GoFundMe page to "investigate the circumstances surrounding his death".

They are also calling for a "new law to ensure our children are safe when taking part in snow activities".

In a heartfelt appeal, his family said: "Louis Watkiss, 12-years-old, passed away on September 24, 2021, at a friend's birthday party due to injuries sustained in an incident at the Snowdome, Tamworth.

"He never had a chance to fight for his life. He did not die on his terms.

"Our son, Louis, died as a young boy. He achieved his goal of making us proud and his dream of being proud of himself. Our lives will never be the same.

"We want to thank all of the emergency services and SnowDome staff who tried incredibly hard to save our son's life."

Louis Watkiss died after colliding with a staff member at the SnowDome in Tamworth

Their statement continued: "We have decided to set up this GoFundMe page because Louis lost his life to a tragic incident that should never have occurred.

"We are asking for support to assist our family's present and future needs to continue the investigation surrounding the circumstances of his death.

"In the future, we want to campaign to change or lobby for new law that ensure our children are safe when taking part in snow activities."

The GoFundMe fundraising appeal has already raised around £3,000 of its £10,000 target.

The emotional appeal said: "Louis was a son, a brother, a grandson, a nephew, a cousin and a friend.

"We are so thankful Louis' younger brother had five happy years with Louis, and he will hold dear the memory of Louis' stoic personality.

"Louis was a studious pupil who enjoyed learning showing immense curiosity about the world around him.

"He played the Saxophone in grade 5, achieving distinctions throughout his Royal Academy of Music exams.

"His involvement in two jazz ensembles - Birmingham Symphony Hall and Birmingham Conservatoire - demonstrated his passion for music.

"Louis supported Chelsea and England football clubs. He followed England Cricket and Birmingham Bears, regularly watching both sports."

The family are urging anyone who witnessed the incident who has yet to come forward to contact the police on 101 or via social media quoting reference 665 of 24 September.

The incident is currently being investigated by Staffordshire Police and the Health and Safety Executive.