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Teens gather to pay tribute after crash tragedy

Floral tributes and messages after Rachel Blaylock of Ponteland died in a car crash in the early hours of Sunday on the A696 near Milbourne, north of Ponteland.
REF 0508142903

Floral tributes and messages after Rachel Blaylock of Ponteland died in a car crash in the early hours of Sunday on the A696 near Milbourne, north of Ponteland. REF 0508142903

Hundreds of people have paid their respects to a Ponteland teenager who died in a car crash at the weekend.

Two gatherings have already taken place to celebrate the life of Rachel Blaylock, described by friends as a happy and very friendly person.

The 18-year-old, who lived with her parents and sister Anna at the family farm in Milbourne, was set to go university in September after completing her A-Levels. She was a student at Ponteland High School.

The incident happened at 4.10am on Sunday on the A696 just north of Ponteland, when a red Mini left the road and hit a tree.

Rachel was the driver of the car and she was pronounced dead at the scene. The three other teenagers in the car were injured.

A plethora of flowers, photographs and messages have been left at the tree.

One of her friends, who was in the same year group as her at school, said: “Rachel spent most of her time with her close group of friends and she organised lots of things for the group.

“We have been paying our respects to a wonderful person. She was very outgoing, always happy and very friendly. She was never mean or nasty to anyone.”

A Facebook page – In memory of Blay – has been set up to give people the opportunity to pay their tributes.

Friends of Rachel gathered at Ponteland Park to remember her and release lanterns on Monday and a night to celebrate her life was held at the Highlander Inn, Belsay, yesterday.

A spokeswoman for Ponteland High School said: “The thoughts and prayers of staff and students are with Rachel’s family and with those of the students who were also involved in this tragic accident.

“Rachel was an extremely popular student. She was actively involved in school life and had a lead role in organising both the highly successful Sixth Form Ball and their Year Book.

“Having studied history, English literature and geography at A-level, she had an offer to study anthropology at Aberdeen University from September – she will be sadly missed.”

The other people in the car, two 19-year-old men and an 18-year-old woman, were taken to the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle. One of the men remains in a “critical but stable” condition, another passenger suffered a broken leg and the other minor injuries.

 

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