Rescuers try in vain to revive 44-year-old after Saturday afternoon tragedy.

A woman died while on a scuba diving trip at Lundy Island on Saturday, police have said.

The 44-year-old, who police said was from the south east, was pulled unconscious from the water and airlifted to North Devon District Hospital in Barnstaple, where she died the following morning.

The experienced diver was with a party of 13 others from Sussex, which had chartered an Ilfracombe dive boat for the trip.

Inspector Roger Bartlett said the incident was not being treated as suspicious and those with the woman had done everything they could to save her.

“They dived in the morning and everything was fine,” he said.

“Three went in for a dive after lunch, she came to the surface in distress and then became unconscious. CPR was administered by the others in the boat but they could not revive her.

“This is a tragic incident, during what was meant to be such a pleasant, enjoyable bank holiday weekend. She was an experienced diver qualified to divemaster standard.

“Her friends did all they possibly could do to save her and are clearly very traumatised by the incident.”

He said according to reports the search and rescue helicopter from RMB Chivenor had been on scene within minutes to airlift the casualty off the boat.

He repeated it was not being treated as suspicious, but that investigations into the actual cause of death were ongoing.

On Sunday police divers went to Lundy to retrieve the diving equipment cut from the woman by her friends as they pulled her from the water for treatment.