TRIBUTES have been paid to a young chef who died when he was hit by a train.
Benjamin Hinks was killed at Bedhampton station on Saturday, February 22.
The 21-year-old had spent the previous evening enjoying himself at a party. The accident happened at 6am.
Since his death, his family have been comforted by the tributes paid to him by his friends.
His family released a statement telling of the ‘loving and smiling’ young chef, who worked and lived at The Compass Rose pub in Anchorage Park, Portsmouth.
The statement said: ‘Ben sadly passed away after a tragic accident after leaving a party and being struck by a train at Bedhampton station.
‘Ben grew up to be a loving, smiling son, brother and uncle.
‘He studied at South Downs College and became an accomplished chef working at the Horse & Jockey before moving on to The Compass Rose.
‘Through his life he touched many people’s lives with his smiling, happy nature.
‘It has been much comfort to our family that his friends have shared so many happy memories about Ben’s time with them.’
It continued: ‘Ben’s hobbies included riding BMXs, skateboarding, fishing, hanging out at the Monday night club at the Astoria and having a laugh with his friends.
‘He especially liked bonfire night and fireworks with the family.
‘Ben was living at the Compass Rose as well as working there. He did not have a girlfriend.’
The rail line between Portsmouth and Havant was closed following the accident.
An inquest into Ben’s death has been opened and adjourned by Portsmouth and South East coroner David Horsley.
In a statement British Transport Police, which dealt with the incident, said: ‘It was reported to BTP at 6.02am, and is being treated as non-suspicious.
‘A file is being prepared for the coroner.’
Ben’s funeral will be on March 14 at Portchester Crematorium at 2pm. All friends and family welcome.