Girl from Hampshire, 11, dies after Cornwall cliff fall

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An 11-year-old girl from Hampshire has died after falling down a mine entrance in a cliff in Cornwall.

Emergency services were alerted to the accident at Droskyn Point, near Perranporth, on Wednesday afternoon.

The girl, on holiday with her family from Andover, is thought to have fallen through the gap in the cliff she was climbing into a water-filled cave.

She was airlifted to the Royal Cornwall Hospital at Treliske in a critical condition but died there later.

The girl is believed to have been 15ft (4.5m) up the cliff when she fell about 30ft (9m) down the mine entrance, or adit.

'Very tragic'

Steve Instance, south west manager for the RNLI's lifeguards, said members of the public had started a rescue attempt by making a human chain at a lower adit into the same shaft.

"They then handed her unconscious to the lifeguards," he said.

The RNLI said that there were a few such adits and openings exposed at low tide on the left hand side of the beach.

A police community support officer was also on the scene and a coastguard team from St Agnes was also called to assist after emergency services were alerted at about 1315 BST.

The RNLI, whose lifeguards helped administer medical treatment, said she was unconscious and not breathing while receiving first aid at the scene.

The girl was taken to hospital by the Cornwall Air Ambulance. She died at about 2200 BST.

Coastguards have described it as a "very tragic incident".

The RNLI said it was "very busy day" on the beach.

Mr Instance said: "We had in the region of 10,000 to 12,000 people on the beach at Perranporth.

"Lifeguards were involved in about 20 to 25 rescues in the water during the day and then, of course, this major incident."

A file on the incident was being prepared for the coroner, police said.

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