Blackpool boy, 9, killed in lightning strike on playing field

A nine-year-old boy has died after apparently being struck by lightning during a football coaching session.

The child was injured on a playing field in the Common Edge Road area of Blackpool shortly after 17:00 BST when a thunderstorm hit the Lancashire town.

Lancashire Police said he was taken to hospital but did not survive.

Spirit of Youth Junior FC, which uses the field, said the boy was understood to have been taking part in a private coaching session.

Police said that although inquiries were still ongoing it was believed the boy was struck by lightning.

Det Supt Nick Connaughton said: “This is a truly devastating incident and our thoughts are wholeheartedly with the family and friends of the young boy who has passed away, at this very sad and distressing time.”

In a statement posted on the club’s Facebook page, Spirit of Youth said: “It is with deepest regret that we have to report the news that the young boy who was struck by lightning earlier this evening has sadly passed away.

“As a club, we are heartbroken and we offer our deepest condolences to the boy’s family.

“Spirit of Youth is a family and we are entrenched in the local community, and we will give whatever support is required to both the family and to those that were with him at the time.

“Rest in peace young man.”

The club secretary Daniel Pack said three teams had been due to train this evening but the sessions were cancelled due to the storm.

Police said the boy’s family had been informed and were being supported by officers.

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