Bright coloured ribbons have been attached to a bridge in memory of Rawtenstall teenager Rachel Collins.

The Haslingden High School student died after falling from the bridge over the A56 in Haslingden on October 14.

Her family have set up JustGiving pages to raise money for two mental health charities - Young Minds Trust and Place2Be - and so far more than £1,700 has been raised.

Rachel, 17, was well known for her brightly coloured hair and her dad Sean, Mel and family have asked that brightly coloured ribbons be placed on the bridge.

Students at Haslingden High School have also been inspired by her family’s fundraising efforts and organised their own event with the approval of Rachel’s family and the school.

Rhys Morton and Mariam Gul, members of the student Sixth Form management team, enlisted fellow students and Rachel’s stepsister Amelia Harrison, 16, to help with the organisation.

 

Rhys, 17, said: “We got in contact with Rachel’s parents because we wanted to raise money for their JustGiving pages and the charity event grew out of several ideas we all had.

“Teachers Mr Albiston and Mr Burrows, who are in a band ‘Uptown Two’, performed ’80s music and there was a raffle with 25 prizes, mostly donated from local businesses.

Heartfelt tributes have been paid to 17-year-old Rachel Collins, from Rawtenstall.

“One teacher gave us £20 for a single strip of tickets. This was our way of showing our support for the family.”

A table tennis rally competition was held and the students boosted the funds by selling cakes. They hope to have raised £500.

Amelia, who is also in the Sixth Form, said: “It is all about raising awareness and encouraging people not be scared to talk about mental health.

“It is really good for Rachel’s family to see the ribbons and the messages of support that people have put on the bridge.

“Rachel’s family do not want her to be forgotten and the ribbons are something positive.

“When I told Sean how much had been raised by the Sixth Form he was totally overwhelmed.”

Head Boy Tarek Ahmed said: “Rachel was a quiet girl but everyone knew her. When it happened people did not know how to feel.

“The school handled it very well and we have had counselling and help in school when people wanted to talk and we had a visit from a therapy dog called Chase.”