Youth centre set up in teen's memory

A BEACON of hope has emerged from the terrible death of teenager Simon Everitt after a poignant memorial service to him yesterday heard that a youth centre will be set up in his memory.

A BEACON of hope has emerged from the terrible death of teenager Simon Everitt after a poignant memorial service to him yesterday heard that a youth centre will be set up in his memory.

About 120 friends and family of Simon, who lived in Great Yarmouth, gathered in St Nicholas Church to pay tribute to the 17-year-old, who died last month.

Simon's body was found at Church Farm in Mautby on June 28. He had been beaten, tied to a tree and had petrol poured down his throat.

He was last seen alive on June 7.


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The service heard a pledge from Simon's father, Vince, that he would raise funds to set up a youth centre in the town to help teenagers who may have problems and need advice.

During the touching ceremony, grieving friends and relatives of the Yarmouth College engineering student heard Mr Everitt, a singer who recorded songs with his son, say: “I think he is looking down and he is smiling. He has brought the sunshine with us today.

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“We want a place for teenagers to go, where they can have a place of safety. The government is failing our children - we cannot.”

Mr Everitt said he hoped his son's awful death would encourage other parents to keep a close eye on their children and make sure they stay in touch if they go out.

He said that the last words his son ever said to him were “Don't worry dad. I know I can handle it, I am a big lad now.”

Canon Michael Woods, taking the service, said: “We have come to share our memories of him - to be together with our grief and our loss.

“He died in terror and agony. The question why hangs over all of us. There is nothing we can do to change that moment in history.”

Simon's stepmother, Sue Everitt, said he was a typical teenager who “loved life and was full of energy”.

During the service, people paid their own tributes to Simon by laying flowers beside a picture of him. One tearful girl described Simon as the “best ever” and a family friend said he was a “pain” sometimes but a nice boy.

And people wept as a pop song - Love out Loud - recorded by Simon and his father was played.

- Three people have been charged with Simon's murder and are due to appear at Norwich Crown Court on September 29.

They are Jonathan Clarke, 19, of Telford, Shropshire, Jimi Lee Stewart, 24, of Nelson Road Central, Yarmouth, and Maria Chandler, 40, of Lancaster Road, Yarmouth.

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