TEENAGER Callum Osborne-Ward was ‘trying to save his family’ before going missing himself in the water at Rockley.

Poole Mayor, Julie Bagwell, who has been liaising with the family told The Daily Echo that Callum was enjoying the beach at Rockley holiday park when his family got into trouble in the water.

She said the 18-year-old from Coventry swam out to save them before going unaccounted for himself.

All 10 of his family members made it to safety and three were taken to hospital as a precautionary measure, following the incident at around 4pm on Monday, July 26.

A multi-agency search and rescue operation was swiftly established and remains ongoing.

Councillor Bagwell said: “This tragedy should never have happened.

“He was just literally being a part of a family and trying to save his family.”

The water around Rockley at Rock Lea River and Wareham Channel is notorious, on Friday two young girls were saved by a paddle boarder and lifeboat.

Julie said: “At Rockley Point the water is just treacherous.

“The two girls a few days before, that was a near-miss and it could’ve been those two - this is how crazy it is.

“We’ve got to try and stop this from happening again.”

Callum’s family, along with the support of the Mayor and Poole residents are hoping to start an awareness campaign around rip tides and currents to help save people in the future.

Julie said: “Myself and the family really do want to thank the professionals, they’re doing a sterling job they really are.

“In tragic circumstances they’re doing a really great job.”

The emergency services helping in the search to find Callum have been drafted in from across the South West with some coming two and a-half hours from Cornwall day and night - they are now being housed by Rockley holiday park whilst the operation continues.

Residents across the region have reached out to help the family, donating money to their GoFundMe page to help organise facilities and hot drinks for the emergency services as well as getting emergency supplies to the family.

Julie said: “They keep thanking the residents but that’s just what we do - we always rally round to help anyone that needs it and this family needs it at the minute.

“It’s Turlin Moor, it’s Hamworthy - it’s what we do. I love my residents and we’ve got the best community spirit.

“The family is in turmoil and our thoughts are with them, they just need their privacy right now.”