Ponteland school prepares for emotional day after death of student Rachel Blaylock

A Northumberland school is preparing for an emotional results day following the death of a popular student

Rachel Blaylock
Rachel Blaylock

Staff at a Northumberland school are preparing for an emotionally charged results day following the death of an “extremely popular student” in an accident.

Rachel Blaylock, 18, from Ponteland, died in the early hours of Sunday when the car she was driving, with friends, hit a tree.

Rachel had recently taken her A-Levels at Ponteland High School and should have been collecting her results this Thursday ahead of going to university later in the year.

The three friends she was travelling with, Rachel Dodd, 18, from Belsay, and 19-year-olds Ian Scott, from Stamfordham, and Steve Hall, were all taken to hospital, where at least one of them remains.

The scene of the two accidents on the A696 outside Ponteland
The scene of the two accidents on the A696 outside Ponteland

Like Rachel, Miss Dodd had just taken her A-Levels at Ponteland, while Ian and Scott left the school after year 11.

Staff at the school have told how they are expecting an emotional results day.

“Obviously results day on Thursday is going to be really upsetting for the students because it will be the first time they will all be together,” a spokeswoman said.

A book of condolences has already been set up in the school and this will be available in the library on results day.

Headteacher Kieran McGrane and staff will also be available to speak to students.

In a statement, the school paid tribute to Rachel.

The statement reads: “The thoughts and prayers of staff and students of Ponteland High School are with Rachel’s family, and with those of the students who were also involved in this tragic accident.

“Rachel was an extremely popular student; she was actively involved in school life and had a lead role in organising both the highly successful sixth form ball and their year book.

“Having studied history, English literature and geography at A-Level, Rachel had an offer to study anthropology at Aberdeen from September – she will be sadly missed.”

The school has also sent flowers to the families of Rachel and Miss Dodd.

Meanwhile, Rachel’s family and friends are seeking to raise money for Amnesty International, the charity for which she was to do the Great North Run next month.

Donations can be made at the JustGiving page Rachel had set up: https:// www.justgiving.com/Rachel-Blaylock/

The Journal has been told Rachel’s funeral will take place at Ponteland Methodist Church on Monday at 12.30pm.


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