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TRIBUTES have been paid to six-year-old Alesha MacPhail, whose body was discovered of Ardbeg Road on Bute yesterday (Monday) morning.


She attended Chapelside Primary School in Airdrie said its headteacher said Alesha would be “greatly missed”.


In a statement released through North Lanarkshire Council, Wendy Davie, said: “Alesha started with us in August 2016 and had just finished Primary 2.


“She loved being at school and enjoyed all aspects of literacy, in particular writing. She was such a perfectionist in her handwriting and was very proud of her work.


“Alesha was very friendly and she welcomed everyone first thing in the morning at breakfast club. She was a very considerate child who loved being part of a group and she was popular with all the other children and was a smiley and happy young girl.”


The headteacher added: “She was part of the family of Chapelside Primary and she will be greatly missed by everyone at the school. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends and Chapelside Primary community at this very sad time.”


Alesha’s mother is understood to live in Airdrie.


It is thought the six-year-old had been staying on Bute with her father and grandparents.


The child’s death was said to have impacted all those living in the “small island community” of Bute.


Councillor Len Scoullar said: “Everyone is very shocked, very sympathetic and concerned.


“We will all be offering our very sincere condolences to the family.


“We are a very small island community, people are genuinely grieving for the family.”


Meanwhile, a major police investigation is continuing

A police spokeswoman said today: “Formal identification has now taken place and we can confirm that the body which was found yesterday morning is that of six-year-old Alesha MacPhail, who was reported missing around 6.25 am yesterday.


“A significant amount of information has already been gathered by officers working on the investigation. A large number of people have come forward with information.”

Police continue to appeal for those who were involved in the searches for Alesha to come forward. The spokeswoman continued: “It’s vital we know who was involved in the searches and where these were carried out. Officers continue to appeal for anyone who has yet to speak to them to get in touch. A number of additional officers have travelled to the island today to provide support to the investigation team and to continue to provide reassurance to those in the community.”


Police confirmed that a post mortem examination will be carried out today.

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Superintendent Stuart Houston said: “Whilst we have had a very encouraging response from our appeal yesterday, I would continue to appeal to those who took part in the search for Alesha when she was reported missing. Those individuals may have critical information which could assist with our enquiries.”

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