Tragic schoolgirl, 11, found dead in river was daughter of acclaimed novelist Nicky Harlow

A GIRL of 11 whose body was recovered from a river was the daughter of a novelist.

Tragic Ursula Keogh vanished yesterday in her school uniform and was last seen at 3.45pm.

Cops launched an urgent search and found her body in a river close to her home in Halifax, West Yorks.

There are no suspicious circumstances, officers said.

Her mum, Nicky Harlow, who writes children's and adults books, was being comforted by specialist officers.

The mum-of-two has written a series of books, including Amelia and the Virgin and The Glass Stairs.

She also lectures in creative writing for the Open University.

Ursula's school, The Lightcliffe Academy, said it would remain open to offer pupils support.

Lightcliffe Academy this morning released a statement, saying: "Following the tragic death last night of our student Ursula Keogh, the academy is open today as we look to support students and the whole academy community with this heartbreaking loss.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Ursula’s family and friends and at this very difficult time."

Tributes to Ursula flooded social media.

One wrote: “Absolutely heart breaking, rest in peace young soul. May whatever come next treat you with beauty and grace. May your mum and dad find peace in the beautiful memories you gave them. God bless."

Eric Robinson said: "There are no words. Such tragic news thoughts go to her family and loved ones."

Donna Vasey added: "I read the earlier headlines, just hoped she had popped to a friend’s house. Sad so sad."


Tina Jackson posted: "Yet another sad day so early in the year of a young child losing their life. My heart goes out to her family."

A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said: "Enquiries will remain ongoing to determine a cause of the death, however, at this stage, it is not believed there are any suspicious circumstances.

"A formal identification will take place in the coming days and Ursula's family have been informed of the discovery."


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