Bench tribute to tragic Burnley student who fell into Leeds and Liverpool Canal

Bench tribute to tragic Burnley student who fell into Leeds and Liverpool Canal

Head Teacher Bob Wakefield and students present the Memorial Bench for Robbie Williamson at Shuttleworth College. Seated on the bench are Robbie’s family. From left, Coby Hewitt, Nicola Grimshaw, Dean Williamson and Skye Williamson

Robbie Williamson

First published in News Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Chief reporter

A MEMORIAL bench, for moments of quiet reflection, is set to be installed in memory of a Burnley student at his high school thanks to a community effort.

Residents in Rosegrove have reached out in the wake of 11-year-old Robbie Williamson’s death, after he fell from a pipe bridge over the Leeds and Liverpool Canal last April.

And now a permanent seat will be installed at a memorial garden in his school, Shuttleworth College, where his friends can sit and remember him.

Kelly Decruz, of Gannow Lane, who led fundraising for the bench, said: “I didn’t know Robbie, or even his family.

“But as a mother you don’t expect to bury one of your own. I put something on Facebook about wanting to do something and we didn’t have to do much more.

“I have been absolutely amazed with the way people have come together.”

The bench was provided at a cut-price by PK Ironworks, based at the Victoria Works in Accrington Road, and Kelly paid tribute to their generosity.

Headteacher Bob Wakefield also made a significant donation to the fund for the bench, which will be positioned in the memorial garden after the summer holidays.

Robbie died after falling from a pipe underneath Dugdale Bridge, when he hit his head on the towpath and slipped into the water. He died later. Security measures have since been fitted to the pipe by National Grid to restrict future access.

The vicinity of the bridge has become a shrine to the youngster, with dozens of floral tributes, scarves and messages of condolence fixed to nearby railings.

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