Bradford

Hebden Bridge woman's balcony death prompts charity

Sarah Royale
Image caption Ms Royale died after a night out watching a World Cup football match

Friends and family of a West Yorkshire woman who died after plunging from a balcony in Singapore are setting up a charity in her memory.

Sarah Royale, 31, from Hebden Bridge, died in June but her insurance company would not pay to bring her body home because she had been drinking.

Donations raised more than £20,000 and it was decided a charity would be set up to help those in similar situations.

It will aim to give advice on inquests, insurance and repatriation.

Ms Royale had spent a year in Australia when she flew to Singapore to sort out paperwork to extend her visa.

She died on 27 June after a night out with friends watching a World Cup football match.

Community 'phenomenal'

After finding out the insurance company would not cover the cost, her sisters had to raise thousands of pounds to bring her body home.

The Hebden Bridge community rallied round and in two weeks raised £23,000.

Close friend Julia Curtis said: "Her sisters had no support whatsoever, very limited support from the Foreign Office, very limited support in what the insurance company could do for them abroad.

"They were left in a situation where they really did not know what to do for the best."

Ms Curtis said the fundraising response from the community had been "phenomenal".

"We had to raise money for repatriation, medical and legal costs and to get such an amount from the community was unbelievable. People have been so generous.

"Now we just want to help others... there's nobody to help people that are grieving that have lost family abroad. We looked for charities and there was absolutely nothing out there."

A spokesperson for the Association of British Insurers said excessive alcohol consumption was regarded by insurers as failing to take reasonable care.

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