Friends of teenager who died at Ulley Reservoir desperately tried to save him

Brave friends of the teenage boy who tragically died at Ulley Reservoir near Sheffield desperately tried to save his life.

Sunday, 30th May 2021, 7:42 pm
Floral tributes left after a male drowned at Ulley Country Park

Sam Haycock got into difficulties in the water at the reservoir and sadly died despite gallant efforts from his friends to prevent him from drowning.

His death has been felt across the community, with people paying tribute and offering condolences to his family after the tragic incident.

Sam attended Oakwood High School in Rotherham, and his passing has come as a great shock to staff and students at the secondary school.

Mr Eccles, Head of Oakwood High School, issued a statement on Saturday; he said: “It is with great sadness that I have to inform you of the tragic passing of a pupil Friday afternoon.

"Sam Haycock (Year 11) was at Ulley Reservoir when he got into difficulty in the water. Despite the gallant efforts of his friends they were unable to prevent him from drowning.”

“This has come as a great shock to us all, and I know it will have an impact on pupils, staff and parents alike. Despite school being closed for half term this week, we are still here to offer support to those who need it.

He added: “On our return to school, staff will be available to support pupils, and we will provide a space for quiet reflection. Although our Year 11 pupils have now finished after their assessments, if they need to access support, they are very welcome to come into school."

“This is an incredibly sad time for us all, and our thoughts go out to Sam's family and friends.

“On behalf of the family, can I ask that we respect their privacy at this incredibly difficult time. The thoughts of the Oakwood High School family are with everyone affected at this incredibly sad time.”

Emergency services were called to Ulley reservoir in Rotherham on Friday at around 3pm after receiving reports that a teenage boy had got into difficulty in the water.

Multiple emergency services rushed to the scene, including specialist search teams in a desperate bid to find him.

Later that night, South Yorkshire Police confirmed that a body was recovered from the reservoir, and specially trained officers are now providing support to his family.

Family friend Theresa Glenn has set up a gofundme page to raise money in memory of Sam, and so far, over £2,000 has been raised with people posting heartfelt messages across the page and online.

In her gofundme profile, Theresa wrote: "A good friend of mine tragically lost her son today.

"I have set this gofundme up to show how us as a community and me as a friend will support you all through this heartbreaking time.

"I've known Sam from being at least five-years-old. The first smile I had from him was when I took him a PG Tips monkey up, which he had been wanting for ages.

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"He loved me from then onwards. So many tears and smiles shed today. Let's show this local family love and support through these difficult days. Going to miss telling you off, Sam. RIP beautiful boy."

The teenager was heavily involved with the sport of Judo and represented his country in competitions all across Europe.

Andrew Parton, owner and head coach at Miramar Judo Academy, dedicated a Facebook post to the teen, which read: “It’s with a very heavy heart that I have to inform people of the sad passing of one of Miramar Judo Clubs players Sam Haycock Sam died yesterday as a result of a tragic accident at a local reservoir.

“He was such a cheerful young man and a pleasure to coach, he loved to compete and kept his trophy cabinet well stocked.

“Mine and the clubs support go out to the family Gaynor Simon and Mikey at this very sad time. Rest in peace my young friend you have left a huge hole in the lives of all that you touched; you will be very sadly missed.”

South Yorkshire Police have now issued a warning about the dangers of open water, advising people to ‘stay out of the water and stick to swimming pools or organised swimming groups instead.’

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Sam Jackson, editor.