Family’s tribute to “lively, outgoing” 11-year-old after fatal Doncaster crash

The family of an 11-year-old killed after being hit by a car in Doncaster say she was “a lively, outgoing girl that everyone fell in love with”.

Ella Smith

Ella Smith was said to be on her way to her grandmother’s house after buying sweets when she was hit by a Citroen C3 a 4.35pm on Thursday.

She was rushed to hospital after the crash on Watch House Lane at the junction with Broughton Avenue but was later pronounced dead.

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Her family said in a statement this weekend: “Ella was a lively outgoing girl that everyone fell in love with. She loved being with her friends and was always facetiming them.

“At school Ella had lots of friends and was part of the Young Voices Choir, recently singing at the Sheffield Arena.

“Ella’s biggest love was her Grandad Tony and going to watch The Dons Rugby Team. She had her rugby shirt out and hung on her wardrobe ready to wear and use with her first season ticket.

“Ella had a heart of gold and always wanted to help.”

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.

Police are appealing to anyone who may have witnessed the incident to call 101, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111, quoting incident number 646 of 19 February 2015.