York & North Yorkshire

Family tribute to Bolton Abbey river fall boy

Floral tributes outside the family home
Image caption Tributes have been left outside the family home

A boy who died after falling into a North Yorkshire river has been described as "popular" and a "loveable rogue".

Aaron Page, from Pontefract, West Yorkshire, got into difficulty in the River Wharfe at Bolton Bridge, near Bolton Abbey in Skipton, on Saturday.

His aunt Delna Waugh told BBC News: "I just can't believe he's gone."

Aaron's brother Josh, 13, who was with him in the water, said: "I managed to get back out and he'd just gone."

Josh said he did not realise how dangerous the water was.

Safety warning

He said "I didn't know it was that deep really.

"I've just got to say 'bye haven't I.

"I loved playing football and pool and snooker with him, there's nowt to do no more."

Image caption Aaron's brother Josh said he did not realise how deep the water was

Aaron had been celebrating his eighth birthday with a large group of family members.

Ms Waugh said her nephew was "very popular", a "loveable rogue" and "very mischievous".

She said: "They just went out on a family outing and it turned out like this.

"We just can't believe it."

In a statement Bolton Abbey said it was "saddened" by Aaron's death.

A spokesman said: "On behalf of the estate all our thoughts are with the family at this time.

"I'd like to thank the emergency services and members of the public for their assistance, and we will continue to liaise with the emergency services with their inquiries."

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service firefighters were among members of the emergency services who tried to save the boy's life.

A spokesman said: "All the firefighters involved were deeply affected by the incident and we offer our sincere condolences to Aaron's family."

He urged people to "take care when entering or playing in or near moving water, rivers or reservoirs".

"Even in hot weather open water, though inviting to look at, can be extremely cold and seemingly slow-moving streams and rivers can have dangerous undercurrents," he added.

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