One Direction’s Harry Styles sent condolences to bereft families after losing two hometown friends in a microlight plane crash on Sunday. Nick Jefferies, age 54, and his passenger Scott Penlington, only 25 years old, were both killed when the tiny aircraft crashed in a Welsh field on the Powell family’s 80-acre farm.
The tiny community of Holmes Chapel, Cheshire, is devastated this week after the loss of two beloved friends and neighbors. Nick Jefferies and his family were central to the small community and were close family friends of Styles and his family. Another close friend of Mr. Jefferies was quoted by Daily Mail speaking about his friend and the plane.
“He was mad keen on his plane and flew it to tiny landing strips all over the place. He was a lovely fellow who knew what he as doing – he kept the plane in tip-top condition. But microlights are so small and light you don’t stand much of a chance if something goes seriously wrong.”
Before One Direction, Harry Styles attended Homes Chapel Comprehensive School, where Styles was a close friend of Nick Jefferies’ daughter, Emilie Jefferies. The two were the same age and in the same classes.
One Direction’s Harry Styles and Emilie Jefferies even went to their grade 11 prom together just months before Styles competed in X Factor, according to the Mirror. Emilie Jefferies now teaches English and Drama in Madrid, Spain, according to the Daily Mail. Still, Styles and Jefferies have remained good friends through the years.
A long time friend of Harry’s has recently passed away in a plane crash. May him and his friend rest in peace. pic.twitter.com/YdrXetP4Cg
— Harry Styles Updates (@HSupdating) September 20, 2016
One Direction star Harry Styles’ grade 11 prom date and long-time friend Emilie Jefferies lost her father in the crash. Her brother not only lost his father but also his best friend Scott Penlington, who was flying along with their father to visit him. The two will be greatly missed in the community.
It is a small and relatively tight-knit community. Hannah Rayner, a community business owner, said she trusted Jefferies flying enough to allow her own 15-year-old son to fly with him, according to the Daily Mail. He was apparently a great pilot and neighbors cannot imagine what might have caused the crash.
‘We’ve known [Nick Jefferies] for about three years – mainly in passing. We used to see him at the local pub The Red Lion. He was actually going to take my 15-year-old son Jack with him on the plane down to meet his dad who lives down south. He said it would be more fun for him to do that – not in the microlight, he has his own light aircraft. It’s really sad, he’ll be greatly missed.”
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One Direction’s Harry Styles knew the whole family well and has stayed in touch with all of them. He even took flying lessons from Mr. Jefferies in the very same plane that crashed this weekend, according to Daily Mail. Harry also knew Scott Penlington well.
The accident happened less than a mile from Saint John the Divine church in the Welsh countryside, near Cwmbach, Builth Wells. The cause of the plane crash is still unknown as police and air accident investigators sift through the wreckage of a plane Harry Styles once took flying lessons in.
[Featured Image by Jason Merritt/Getty Images]