Family’s thanks for 
village tributes

NRHN 03-08-12 BE 4 Vickie Butler and David Carnell press conference about Charlotte Blackman.
NRHN 03-08-12 BE 4 Vickie Butler and David Carnell press conference about Charlotte Blackman.

The family of a young woman killed in a landslide on a Dorset beach have thanked wellwishers for support during their ordeal.

Last week St Susanna’s Church in Horsley Woodhouse saw more than 100 mourners pay tribute to much-loved Charlotte Blackman, who touched the lives of many pupils at the village primary school, where she volunteered.

This week Vickie Butler, the sister of Charlotte’s boyfriend Matthew, read out a statement on behalf of the Blackman family, thanking those who attended the service last Tuesday.

Speaking outside her home in Toton, Nottinghamshire, on Friday, Vicki, 38, said: “The tragic events of last week have changed our lives completely.

“What had been an idyllic, enjoyable family holiday very quickly turned into a living nightmare that will be etched in our minds forever.”

Vicki ended the statement with: “The family are obviously devastated and thank everybody for their kind words but ask you to respect their privacy at this very sad time.”

Charlotte, from Heanor, who was 22, had met Matthew at Aldercar Community and Language College in Aldercar, six years ago. The family statement described the couple as ‘childhood sweethearts’, who shared many plans for a ‘bright future together’.

Matthew’s older sister Vicki told the News it was the family’s first trip to the Freshwater Holiday Park in Burton Bradstock.

Charlotte was killed as she walked past 60ft high cliffs that fell suddenly. Geologists say heavy rainfall might have caused the rocks to slip.

Charlotte had just been awarded a first class degree in education studies at the University of Derby and had a promising career in teaching ahead of her.

The family has now set up the Charlotte Blackman Memorial Fund. The fund aim to raise awareness and funds for local charities for autistic and vulnerable children, said the family in their statement.