Former Leeds student dies on backpacking trip in Thailand

A FORMER Leeds University student is understood to have died while travelling in Thailand.

Christina Annesley was a former Leeds University student.

According to social media, 23-year-old Christina Annesley died yesterday during what was to be a four-month backpacking trip around South East Asia and Australia.

On Monday, the history graduate was tweeting from Koh Tao - the same island where another University of Leeds graduate David Miller was murdered along with Hannah Witheredge, a 23-year-old from Great Yarmouth, in September.

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The circumstances of Christina’s death are not yet known but a close friend has told the YEP it was from natural causes and was just two weeks into her trip in Thailand.

A Foreign Office spokesperson said: “We can confirm the death of a British national in Thailand on 21 January 2014.

“We are providing consular assistance to the family at this difficult time.”

During her time at Leeds University, Christina was a busy political activist and a founding member of the Leeds Liberty League in 2011.

Prior to setting up the League, she was active in the Conservative Party and was elected branch chairman of the youth wing of the Conservative party from 2011-2012.

In 2011, she stood in the local elections for Headingley.

Chris Rowell, chairman of Yorkshire and Humber Conservative Future told the YEP: “I was deeply saddened to learn of the tragic death of Christina, it’s tragic to lose someone at such a young age.

“While Christina did not stay with the Conservative Party, she was always a strong defender of liberty. It is clear from all of the tributes paid to her from across the political spectrum, that she will be deeply missed.”

According to Christina’s LinkedIn page, she had hoped to get into journalism and said she had “specific interest in current affairs, political ideology and social justice”.

She said she was applying for a Masters in English Literature to start from September 2015 before travelling around South East Asia and Australia between January and April 2015.

Tributes were yesterday flooding social media to the popular 23-year-old, who was originally from Orpington in Kent.

Coun Alice Smart (Lab, Armley) tweeted: “Shocked and saddened by the news that @chrstinadarling has passed away. She was one of a kind. My thoughts are with all her friends and family.”

@JamieMatthews84 wrote: “So sad and shocked to hear news about @chrstinadarling who stood in Headingley in 2011. A nice person and good candidate.”

@wallaceme wrote: “Awful to hear that young libertarian @chrstinadarling has died in Thailand. A brilliant girl, and a great campaigner.”