Three 11-year-old girls have been hailed as heroes for saving their friend from drowning in a freezing canal.
Chloe Collins was feeding the ducks at Peartree Bridge when an aggressive goose suddenly chased her.
“Chloe started to run away and in her panic she fell straight into the canal,” said Chloe’s dad Antony.
Unable to swim, and gasping for breath because of the cold, 11-year-old clutched at grass on the bank to stop herself from drowning.
Her quick-thinking fellow Langland School pupils Mia Bassett and twins Amber and Jasmine tried to drag her out.
“It was quite a struggle, but they managed to keep her head above the water and heave her to safety,” said Antony.
“She was covered with cuts and bruises and freezing cold, but had these friends not been there it would have been a very different story,” he said.
Paramedics checked Chloe over and agreed she’d had a lucky escape.
Antony has now issued a warning to other parents of the danger of children going near canals.
“The canal is really close to our house and we thought feeding the ducks was a totally safe think for Chloe and her friends to do,” he said.
“Her mum and I both said goodbye to her as she went off with her friends. It is so scary to think that it could have been the last time we saw our daughter alive.”
Richard Priest, head of Bucks Fire and Rescue Service’s community safety team, said: “Even good swimmers can be caught out by hidden dangers. Any stretch of water, still or flowing, has the capability to kill.”