Wimbledon school crash: Heartbreaking tributes to girl, 8, killed when Land Rover ploughed into end-of-term tea party | The SunJuly 7, 2023
TRIBUTES have been paid to an eight-year-old schoolgirl who was killed when a Land Rover smashed into a primary school in Wimbledon.
Heartbroken friends and family laid flowers at The Study Preparatory School, on Camp Road, in South London, where the vehicle crashed into one of the buildings just before 10am yesterday .
Police confirmed yesterday that an eight-year-old girl had died while 16 people were injured, with 12 rushed to hospital.
Detective Chief Superintendent Clair Kelland choked back tears yesterday as she revealed the news of the child's death.
Today the young girl's name was revealed when a woman wearing a blue sling around her arm visited the scene and left flowers in a box and a card.
She paused to look at the flowers and was consoled by a man she was with.
She left a note at the scene saying: "Dear Selena, you will always be our shining star. We will miss you so much."
The note included a picture of a star and had kisses on it.
The driver of the £70,000 4×4, a woman in her 40s, has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.
She stopped at the scene before her arrest and one line of inquiry is that she may have suffered a "medical episode" behind the wheel.
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It is thought that the fence would likely have prevented teachers and students from seeing the car approaching.
Medics and rangers from Wimbledon Common rushed to help the school after the horror accident.
The crash is not being treated as terror-related.
One man, who drove past the scene just seconds later, told The Times: "The girls were screaming – it was harrowing.
"Everyone was rushing, saying a car had just driven into the grounds.
"There was one little baby that was in the ambulance who was crying uncontrollably."
This morning, mourners laid floral tributes outside the school in memory of the little girl who died and those who were injured.
One card left at the scene said: "To the Study and parents. So sorry for this tragic loss to the school and the family. Forever in our thoughts."
Sophia Graham, 27, who brought flowers to the site yesterday evening, said: "When we found out one of the kids had died it was awful..
"It's made a big impact on everyone."
The children were taking part in a tea party outside when the vehicle careered across the grass, crushing tables and chairs before hitting the building.
Glass shards and wall rubble were left strewn across the playground.
One local said: "It’s terrible, the children were sat on the grass with their teachers for the end of the school year having a tea party."
The school issued a statement yesterday evening, saying staff are "profoundly shocked" by the awful news, which had a "significant impact" on pupils and families.
A spokesperson added: "Our thoughts are with the bereaved family and with the families of those injured at this terrible time."
It comes as the borough is currently hosting to the world-famous tennis championship that bears its name.
A Wimbledon spokesperson said: “On behalf of everyone at Wimbledon, we wish to convey our heartfelt condolences to all those affected by the tragic events at Wimbledon Study Preparatory School.
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“Our thoughts are with them, their families, the school and the wider community at this deeply distressing time.”
The £16,000-a-year school caters for girls up to age 11, where headteacher Helen Lowe was on her last day.
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