Family left devastated by man's river death

The family of a senior music executive said they were "devastated" after he died when a boat carrying six passengers capsized.

Keith Lowde, 66, was found by police divers yesterday near where the small vessel suddenly turned over in the River Thames, near Shepperton in Surrey on Sunday evening.

Recovery teams continue to hunt for Rex Walford, a former Cambridge University lecturer who is feared dead.

The four other passengers, three women and one man, described as being in their 50s and 60s, were taken to Frimley Park Hospital in Surrey with minor injuries after the incident.

A statement from Mr Lowde's family said: "We are all devastated by the loss of Keith Lowde.

"He was a wonderful husband, and a truly amazing father. This tragic accident has left a massive hole in all our lives.

"The response from all our friends, Keith's work colleagues, and his students has been immense and we thank them all for their support and help.

"It is clear that over his life Keith has helped so many people in such a positive way. He will be sadly missed but never forgotten."

Mr Lowde is believed to have been taking his wife and two other couples a short distance from his home on Pharaoh's Island in the River Thames to the bank at Shepperton.

Surrey Police used a helicopter with a thermal imaging camera in the hunt for the men. The search was also joined by specialist divers from the Sussex force.

Mr Lowde is listed on the website of the Guildford-based Academy of Contemporary Music (ACM) as a music business tutor with more than 20 years' experience in the music industry at a senior level.

His work includes directing a national music festival for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

Mr Lowde's close friend, Dr Walford, was formerly a lecturer in geography and education and head of the University of Cambridge Department of Education.

He now lectures extensively for the University's Institute of Continuing Education.