A LOVING father has died after falling head-first into a manhole in a village field.
The 37-year-old man, named locally as Steve Rimmer, of Tattenhall, was confirmed dead by emergency services shortly after the tragedy happened at 2.20pm on Tuesday.
Although the full circumstances surrounding his death are not yet known, it is believed Mr Rimmer had been digging the hole as part of manual labour on the field where he worked on Wood Lane, Tattenhall.
News of his death has left the rural community where he lived and worked in ‘complete shock’.
A friend and former colleague of Mr Rimmer’s who lives on Wood Lane, and did not wish to be named, said she had been ‘absolutely devastated’ to hear of his death.
“It’s just unbelievable, he was a brilliant lad, always acknowledged you and just a really nice man.
“We’ve known him for about 20 years when he and I used to work together picking fruit.
“He comes from a big family of hard workers and nice people. Steve has two lovely kids and was just a genuine, great man who would always go out of his way to help you.
“He used to maintain the drains and worked in that field every day. He did that type of manual work on the fields but he never sat still and was always working hard.
“Every day you’d see him with a smile on his face, this is absolutely shocking.”
Her husband added: “We were just about to go out when we saw the 12 fire engines lined along the street by the field, and the police helicopter and we knew something terrible had happened. The police and ambulance crews should be praised for how fast they responded.
“Steve was such a well known figure in the community, because everyone knows each other around here.”
A spokesperson for the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) confirmed yesterday they are dealing with the incident and said: “This matter is a joint investigation between the HSE and Cheshire police.
“Inspectors went out to the site yesterday and a formal investigation has now been launched.”