Tributes paid to ‘funny and engaging’ South Molton pupil who died after a night out in Ilfracombe

PUBLISHED: 11:54 31 May 2017 | UPDATED: 11:54 31 May 2017


The family of 16-year-old Luke Campbell-Tapson says there is now a ‘Luke-shaped hole in their lives’ following his death at the weekend

Luke Campbell-Tapson had been on a night out with friends. Luke Campbell-Tapson had been on a night out with friends.

The family of a teenager who died in a suspected drug-related incident in Ilfracombe at the weekend have paid tribute to a ‘wonderful, kind, talented young man’.

Luke Campbell-Tapson, 16 and from South Molton, tragically died in hospital in the early hours of Saturday (May 27).

In a statement his family said: “Luke’s family and many, many friends have been devastated by the loss of such a wonderful, kind, talented young man.

“He was only 16-years-old, bursting with promise, with a rich and full life in front of him, and has paid a price completely out of proportion.

Luke's family say he was a 'funny, chaotic and shiny presence'. Luke's family say he was a 'funny, chaotic and shiny presence'.

“The support and love of his community has been a great comfort to us, but there is now a large Luke-shaped hole in our lives, where a funny, engaging, chaotic, shiny presence used to be.

“He was dancing in a thunderstorm the night he died. In our hearts he will be dancing in the thunderstorm forever.”

Luke, a South Molton Community College pupil, was admitted to North Devon District Hospital having possibly taken a recreational drug at a youth disco in Ilfracombe on Friday night.

Police have launched an investigation and carrying out enquiries to establish the circumstances surrounding his death.

Superintendent Toby Davies, police commander for North and West Devon, said: “North Devon is a close community and this is a tragic loss of a popular teenager. Our heart goes out to all of Luke’s family and friends at this exceptionally difficult time.

“At this time the cause of death is unknown and officers are following up a number of lines of enquiry. One of those lines of enquiry relates to the possible consumption of a controlled substance, believed to be MDMA tablets.”

Anyone with any information about the incident can contact the police on 101 or email, quoting reference CR/042103/17.

Information can also be passed anonymously to Crimestoppers via 0800 555111 or

* For advice on drugs and the possible risks posed, head to

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