UK band Viola Beach ‘killed in Swedish car crash’ – BBC News

11 months ago Comments Off on UK band Viola Beach ‘killed in Swedish car crash’ – BBC News

Viola Beach

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The four-piece Warrington-based band released their debut single Swings & Waterslides last year

Five British nationals have died in a car crash in Sweden, the Foreign Office has said.

It is understood all four members of the indie band Viola Beach died in the accident, which happened on Saturday near the Swedish capital Stockholm.

The car plunged more than 25m (82ft) from a highway bridge into a canal, the police say.

The Foreign Office said it was in contact with the local authorities and supporting the families of the victims.

The Warrington-based band members were Kris Leonard, River Reeves, Tomas Lowe and Jack Dakin.

They were due to play a gig in Guildford in Surrey on Saturday, but it was cancelled. They had been part of the line-up for Swedish music festival Where is the Music? on Friday.

The four-piece released their debut single Swings & Waterslides last year and had featured on BBC Introducing, which showcases up-and-coming music artists.

Tributes have been pouring in on social media for the band.

Travis lead singer Fran Healy tweeted: “So sad. @Viola_Beach :(“

Ross Jarman, from The Cribs, tweeted: “Heart goes out to the Viola Beach guys and their families.”

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Spandau Ballet’s Martin Kemp posted this message

Viola Beach

  • Four-piece band from Warrington, Cheshire
  • Kris Leonard – guitar, lead vocal; River Reeves – guitar; Tomas Lowe – bass; Jack Dakin – drums
  • Released debut single Swings & Waterslides last year
  • Played several BBC Introducing Sessions
  • Performed at Reading and Leeds Festival in 2015
  • They were on tour and due to play a string of dates at venues across the UK

Media captionArchive footage of Viola Beach performing for BBC Introducing

Swedish police said they received a call about 02:30 local time (01:30 GMT) and were on the scene within five minutes.

They said divers recovered the bodies of the victims – aged between 20 and 35 – after their Nissan Qashqai plunged through a gap in the bridge which had opened to let a boat pass underneath.

The bridge has a middle section that rises directly upwards without tilting, leaving a gap that the car drove into, the police said.

A barrier before the opening has flashing lights and warning signs, the officer handling the case said, and other drivers were waiting behind the barrier.

Inspector Martin Bergholm said: “For some reason, the car drove through the barriers and crashed down into the canal.

“The witnesses just saw a car beside them and kind of disappear.”

Eyewitness Jonny Alexandersson told the BBC he was waiting for the bridge to go down when he saw a car coming very fast on the left side.

“It was very tight,” he said. “They passed me and in front of me was a taxi and the car smashed the side of this car and then they go in the barrier, then I don’t see anything more of the car, the lights were gone.”

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The car was towed from the canal under the E4 highway bridge near Stockholm

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The accident happened in the early hours of Saturday morning in Sodertalje

UK band Viola Beach ‘killed in Swedish car crash’ – BBC News