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Stewards 'stop tribute to Luke Barnett' at Aston Villa match

By Alex Ross | Cannock | News | Published:

The 19-year-old from Cannock died while on holiday in Ibiza.

Luke Barnett, who died on a trip to Ibiza for a friend's 21st birthday.

A minute's applause at an Aston Villa football match in memory of a teenager who died in Ibiza was disrupted by stewards, his family and friends claim.

The tribute to Luke Barnett, from Cannock, was organised for the 19th minute by his close friend at Villa Park on Saturday.

But when the group of eight supporters stood up in the Holte End to mark the 19-year-old’s death, they claim stewards told them to sit down.

An argument took place and the group left at half-time.

Luke died last month after a cardiac arrest following a night out in San Antonia – thought to have been triggered by an undetected pre-existing health condition.

Luke, left, watching Aston Villa with friend Curtis Lawley

His mother Claire Barnett, aged 45, said she was unhappy with the reaction from stewards.

She was sat in the Trinity Road stand with her son, 10-year-old Ollie.

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She said: “The boys had organised the tribute and told the club they would be doing it.

“But when it came to the 19th minute they were told to sit down.

“When a member of the group went to protest, he was told to leave. The boys then went to make a complaint.”

Luke went to Ibiza to mark a friend’s 21st birthday. He was walking back to his hotel after getting food when he collapsed.

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His funeral, at Stafford Crematorium followed by an event at Chase Golf Club last Thursday, attracted hundreds of people.

Curtis Lawley, 21, from Cannock, was among his friends on holiday and organised Saturday’s tribute.

He often went to Villa Park with Luke and his step-father Lee.

He said: “I got in touch with the club over social media to let them know about the applause.

“But when we stood up at the 19th minute we got told immediately to sit down.

“My step-dad tried to talk to the stewards – five of them took him away and we followed to make a complaint.”

An Aston Villa spokesman said: “We have invited Luke’s family to come into Villa Park to discuss the matter with the club.”

Alex Ross

By Alex Ross
@alexross_star

Chief Reporter at the Express & Star. Everyone has a story - tell me yours.

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