Boy dies after falling ill at Center Parcs swimming pool

David Harding
The sub-tropical swimming paradise pool (Center Parcs)

A young boy has died after falling ill at a Center Parcs swimming pool.

Emergency services were called to the Longleat Forest holiday park in Wiltshire at 3.39pm on Saturday.

The boy was reportedly playing in the sub-tropical indoor pool area when he began to feel unwell.

The BBC reported that one eyewitness said the boy's mother was “screaming” for her son to wake up amid desperate attempts to revive him.

A spokeswoman for Center Parcs said: “We are deeply saddened by the tragic news that a young guest passed away after becoming unwell whilst at Longleat Forest.

He was later airlifted to hospital.

“Our thoughts are with the family at this extremely difficult time.

“We are continuing to offer our support to the family and to our employees who provided immediate assistance.”

The tourist centre has been open since 1994 (Center Parcs)

She added that no further information or comment would be provided “in accordance with the family’s wishes for privacy at this difficult time”.

There were also reports that people continued using the pool slides while the child was being treated and that the pool reopened just hours after the tragedy.

Others at Center Parcs at the time complained that there was too much secrecy at the resort in the immediate aftermath.

One accused the venue as handling the tragedy “terribly”.

The Center Parcs spokesman added: “Our team responded professionally and appropriately in very challenging circumstances.

“They provided CPR, with the assistance of medically trained members of the public, until paramedics arrived and screened the area from view while the boy was being treated.

“At the family’s request, we did not share any further information on the boy’s condition until the family were comfortable with us doing so.“

“We have remained in regular contact with the family throughout the week and they have passed on their gratitude to the team for the way they responded and the immediate medical care they provided.”


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South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust was called to the scene at 3.39pm on Saturday.

Two rapid response vehicles, an ambulance and an air ambulance attended.

An eyewitness told the Wiltshire Times that the child was playing in the sub-tropical indoor pool area.

They told the newspaper that three other children were in the water when the youngster was taken ill.

Police said it was a “medical incident” only and they were not called to Center Parcs.

Last month the Center Parcs at Longleat celebrated its 25th birthday.

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