Body find 'distress' for pupils

Published Wednesday, 21 May 2014
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The principal of a primary school in Londonderry has praised his staff and pupils for how they coped after discovering a dead body on a beach.

Body find 'distress' for pupils
Magillan Point, on the shores of Lough Foyle. (© UTV)

The police have launched an investigation and are trying to identify the body.

Twenty-seven children from the Model Primary were at Magilligan Point, just a few miles from Limavady, on a school field trip on Tuesday morning.

The Primary 7 pupils had been divided into groups. A teacher was leading three girls and two boys when the body of a man was spotted on the sands.

The authorities on both sides of the border have been informed of the discovery.

In Northern Ireland, the PSNI has begun a formal investigation and a post-mortem examination has been carried out to try and establish how he died.

The children returned to class on Wednesday - and the Model Primary School has taken steps to reduce any trauma or distress.

Principal Paul Sheridan said: "It was distressing. It was distressing for adults as well as the children.

"To put everything in context, the children were part of a group. They didn't see the body as such - they saw it from a distance.

"When the children came back, we spoke to the children in that group and asked them to share their experiences."

He continued: "We contacted the parents and we told them."

The principal added that the school has a counsellor the pupils could visit if needed.

"Although it's a sad and traumatic time for some of the children, we shouldn't forget there's a family that's grieving for the loss of a son or father and our thoughts and prayers and condolences are very much with the family."

© UTV News
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