Coastal hike by Reepham High School students in memory of Mariana Stocks

Friends of a teenager who was found dead at home last year will be walking along the Norfolk coast to raise the awareness of a mental health charity.

Mariana Stocks, 13, from Melton Constable, near Fakenham, was a 'creative and talented' student at Reepham High School who had a large group of friends, a boyfriend and a supportive family.

But on February 16 last year she was found hanging at her home by her mother.

In memory of the teenager, a group of four students who were in her year group at Reepham High, including boyfriend Francesco Santos-Allan, will be walking from Hunstanton to Cromer starting tomorrow.

They want to raise �1,000 for YoungMinds, which aims to improve the mental health and emotional wellbeing of young people in Britain.

The group also includes Miles Hunt, 15, from Bawdeswell, Alisha Palmer, 15, from Dereham, Immie O'Shea, 15, from Corpusty, near Reepham, her brother Joseph O'Shea, seven, and older sister Polly O'Shea, 22, a former Reepham High pupil who now lives in Denmark.

They aim to walk 13 miles each day and finish on Wednesday.

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Francesco, 15, from Corpusty, who had been Mariana's boyfriend for over a year when she died, said: 'Everyone was devastated.

'It was one of the worst things to have happened to the school. She was a very happy and jolly person.' Immie said: 'We were all in shock.'

The inquest into Mariana's death, on July 26, heard that she died less than two hours after friends and teachers had raised serious concerns.

It was told that diaries, documents and artwork found after her death painted a dark picture and police later learned she had fabricated a terminal heart condition.

Recording a narrative verdict, Greater Norfolk coroner William Armstrong said Mariana 'died as a result of her own deliberate actions while in a disturbed state of mind'.

But he added there was not sufficient evidence to conclude that the teenager had intended to kill herself, so a suicide verdict was not appropriate.

'With teenage mental health, there is a common perception of it being a phase or attention seeking but it is as serious as adult mental health,' Polly said.

As well as being creative Mariana also loved the sea and would have taken part in the walk if she was still alive, according to her friends.

Miles said: 'You need to pay attention to these things [teenager mental health] because they are the kind of issues that affect you in later life. With Mariana we didn't know she was feeling like that, which added to the impact.'

The group will be camping at Burnham Deepdale, Stiffkey and Weybourne and support will be provided by Reepham High teacher Leeanne Reid.

To donate to the fundraiser visit

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