The parents of an 11-year-old boy who died in road accident have paid tribute to a son who “loved life and loved people”.

Ethan Linwood was a front seat passenger in a black Peugeot 206 that struck a tree on the B1051 near Thaxted at 9.30pm last Wednesday.

Ethan was taken to Addenbrooke’s Hospital suffering from head injuries, but died on Monday.

The 19-year-old female driver of the car remains in a stable condition.

Ethan had previously lived with his parents and sister in Finchingfield, before the family moved to the outskirts of Thaxted.

He was a former pupil at Great Sampford Primary School, where he won an award for citizenship at the end of this year’s summer term, and had recently started secondary school.

His parents, Morag and Robert Linwood, said: “Ethan recently started year seven at Saffron Walden County High School and loved it, making new friends and experiencing new things.”

When Ethan left primary school, headteacher Ian Pollard described Ethan as “the most delightful character, who never seems to have a bad word to say about anyone or anything.

Mr Pollard had added: “Well done Ethan, it has been a great pleasure to have you at Great Sampford, your sense of humour will be missed and I wish you every success for the future.”

Ethan was a keen golfer, and had attended weekly lessons on Saturdays at Saffron Walden Golf Club, where he’d hoped to join as a junior member.

He also played football for Thaxted Rangers and was an enthusiastic volunteer at Great Sampford Youth Club.

Mr and Mrs Linwood said: “Ethan and his sister adored each other. She was the big sister who was overly protective and advised him on his hair and clothes.

“He was the little brother who bribed with popcorn would curl up with her and watch Disney DVD’s.

“In short Ethan loved life and he loved people. Everyone who met Ethan was touched by his kindness and politeness. Everyone who knew him will miss him greatly.”