TRIBUTES have been paid to an “lovely, happy” eleven-year-old who died when she was hit by a car in Doncaster.
Neighbours say the girl, named locally as Ella Smith, was on her way to her grandmother’s house after buying sweets when she was hit by a Citroen C3 yesterday.
She was rushed to hospital after the crash on Watch House Lane at the junction with Broughton Avenue but was later pronounced dead.
At the scene today, there was no sign of the tragedy apart from a single floral tribute attached to a lamp post.
A red rose was attached to a card, protected in plastic and tied round the post with sellotape. The card read: “To Ella Bella, you will always be my best friend xxx. I will love you forever. Love from Chloe, Cedar Class xxxxxxx.”
At Ella’s grandmother’s house, just 30 yards from the scene of the accident, a woman who answered the door burst into tears and said: “I can’t talk. She was my granddaughter. I just can’t talk.”
The accident occurred on a single-carriageway road with traffic moving in both directions, a 30mph main road which meets a 20mph road at a T-junction.
On one side of the road there are shops, McColls newsagent and All About You, a beauty salon. On the other side are residential houses.
Yvonne McFarlame, 57, who lives opposite the shop, said: “I was with my grandchildren in my house and they noticed the ambulance outside. When I opened the door I saw the little girl on the road and her head was on the pavement.
“Next door rang an ambulance and covered her up with a blanket. I think she misjudged the distance and ran from the shop across the road. She was just so still. Next door said she just ran.”
A lady whose son attends the same school as Ella, who did not wish to be named, said: “She was a lovely, silly, happy girl. She was always polite.
“She was in year six at Kirkby Avenue school. Her family are really lovely. She had long brown hair and she was beautiful. It’s so sad and I can’t image what the family are feeling. She hasn’t even been to high school yet.”
An unnamed woman who lives opposite Ella’s grandmother said: “She had been at her grandma’s and she was getting sweets from the shop. I didn’t see anything but I heard a big bang. It was such a loud bang.”
The headteacher of a school where 11-year-old Ella attended has paid tribute to the pupil, describing her as a “shining light”.
Beverley Lockwood, head at Kirby Avenue Primary School, said: “Obviously our thoughts and wishes are with her parents and her whole family.
“She was an absolute shining light in year six and full of fun, an all round lovely girl. We are absolutely devastated.”
South Yorkshire Police confirmed that no-one had been arrested in connection with the incident but enquiries continue.
Anyone who may have witnessed the incident is asked to call 101, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111, quoting incident number 646 of February 19, 2015.