Charlotte's family and friends to celebrate a young life dedicated to helping other people
The death of 22-year-old Charlotte Blackman on a beach in midsummer is an event that touched many people. Ella Rhodes spoke to her family about her life.
"EVERYONE who met Charlotte fell in love with her immediately," said mum Rachel Blackman.
The family had been on holiday in Dorset with Charlotte's fiancé, Matt Carnell, when a freak accident changed their lives.
On Tuesday, July 24, the family were spending a day together on the beach.
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Charlotte, Matt, her father, Kevin, brother Mitchell and his friend, Dale, walked along the beach while Rachel was setting up camp.
As they walked back, Charlotte, of Heanor, who was nearest the cliff, was crushed under tonnes of rock. Kevin was also badly injured in the fall.
Mrs Blackman said: "When I heard that Charlotte was under the rocks, I was quite calm. I ran down the beach to see what had happened.
"I just hoped that she was going to be all right, that she was just trapped.
"But Kevin knew she was gone. He'd seen what had happened.
"So many newspapers at the time said that people on the beach rushed to help Matt and Kevin free Charlotte but nobody did.
"Everyone was shouting at them to get away from the cliff in case there was another landslide."
Mrs Blackman said that, the day after the accident, four of Charlotte's friends joined the family in Dorset and suggested starting a memorial fund.
The fund, which aims to give holidays to children with autism and those brought up in care, has raised more than £8,000.
Mrs Blackman said: "When her friends suggested it, it was a bit of a blur. I said yes but didn't really know what effect it would have.
"Almost as soon as we got back, people were on Facebook saying they'd make jewellery for the fund and do all sorts to raise money for it. It spiralled from there.
"Now we've organised a charity gig and 15 of her friends, and Kev, are doing a parachute jump to raise money for the fund."
Charlotte's grandma, Kate Roche, said: "The fund is bringing out the best in so many people.
"She's brought a lot of people together who have never met before. All of them are doing something for the fund. Complete strangers are helping out."
Mrs Blackman said that, after her daughter's death, she was worried she had missed signs near the beach warning of potential land slips.
She said: "After we went back to the area, we saw we'd only have seen the signs if we'd walked on to the beach in a certain direction."
Following Charlotte's inquest, the coroner wrote to the holiday park to suggest more signs in the area.
Mrs Blackman said: "I think they should make the signage more visible. They should have them on the cliff. There are big boulders on the beach where they could fasten signs."
She added that her daughter was caring and intelligent from an early age: "Even when Charlotte was little, you could speak to her as if she was grown-up. She was always very bright."
Charlotte, who lived on Mansfield Road, studied for her A-levels at Bilborough College but, after working with two children who had autism, realised she would like to be a special-needs teacher.
She enrolled on an education studies degree at the University of Derby.
Mrs Blackman said: "She was really well liked at university. She always helped other people with their work. If they were doing a group project, she'd always want theirs to be the best."
Charlotte's work with autistic children started before she went to university. She travelled to Matlock every week to take a young boy swimming.
Mrs Blackman said: "With the change in Government, the funding was changed and children only got funding until they were 16.
"She started befriending a little boy called Caleb and took him on the buses."
Charlotte was one of the Derbyshire Autism Service's longest-serving volunteers.
Mrs Roche said: "I remember Charlotte taking me for a hospital visit and, when she pulled up at my house, got chatting to a neighbour.
"I remember the neighbour said to me later, 'I can't believe such a beautiful young woman would take the time to speak to me'."
Mrs Blackman said that Charlotte and Matt met while at Aldercar Language College but fell for each other at Bilborough College.
Mrs Blackman said: "They were together for nearly seven years. When I first met Matt, he was quite shy but he eventually came out of his shell.
"He still comes round to see us about twice a week."
Mr and Mrs Blackman will collect Charlotte's degree at a ceremony at the University of Derby next Thursday.
Mrs Blackman said: "We're treating it as a celebration and, after the ceremony, we're having an open house at which friends and family can drop in and have a drink with us to celebrate."
Fiona Shelton, senior lecturer in education studies at the University of Derby, said: "Charlotte was an excellent student throughout her time at Derby.
"As well as achieving a first-class honours degree, she made a significant contribution to life on the course and was well liked and respected by students and staff alike.
"The university and staff are very proud to be able to honour Charlotte's achievement with the award of her degree and to welcome her parents, Kevin and Rachel, as well as Matt, her fiancé, to the graduation ceremony to collect it on her behalf."