Devizes student Chantelle Rosario has paid tribute to drowned teenager Craig Butler who she described as her soulmate and like a father to her child.

Craig, 17, described by his adoptive mother as a daredevil, drowned in the River Frome near Trowbridge, on Saturday.

He got into difficulty while swimming with friends near the weir at Tellisford after diving in from a tree. Police divers recovered his body that evening.

Miss Rosario, 19, said she was devastated.

The couple split up at the end of last year, but they remained close friends and Mr Butler lived at her home in Mayenne Place, Devizes, on and off until recently. Then he moved to Trowbridge, his home town.

Miss Rosario, a student at North Wessex Training, said Mr Butler doted on her two-year-old daughter Ciara.

She said: “Craig took to Ciara straight away, he classed her as his own. He loved her to pieces, he doted on her. He bought her everything, her walker and clothes.

“I can’t believe he has died. I haven’t been able to sleep or eat since I heard. I feel lost without him. I have lost a part of me, he was my soulmate and I loved him.”

A friend, Max James, 18, of Colston Road, Devizes, said: “He would help anyone out in any way. He was never annoyed or upset, he was always happy and bubbly.”

Mr Butler had been staying at Amber Lodge, a hostel in Bythesea Road in Trowbridge while he was waiting to get his own house.

He attended Clarendon College and he did courses in mechanics, bricklaying and carpentry at Wiltshire College in Trowbridge last year.

He was due to go to Lackham in September to do a course in mechanics.

His adoptive parents Vanessa, 57, and Patrick Butler, 58, of Wilton Drive, Trowbridge, said he was a popular boy.

Mrs Butler said: “We are carers and our clients go to the Gateway Club in Melksham. They thought the world of him in there.

“He liked riding bikes and doing anything daring – if it was daring he did it. He died being Craig – a daredevil to the last. I just can’t believe he’s gone.”

The funeral is at West Wiltshire Crematorium, Semington, on August 20 at 3.15pm.