Tributes have been paid to a “hard working” and “passionate” climbing instructor, who died following a freak accident.

Kong Adventure Keswick confirmed earlier this week that one of its instructors, Sam Pilcher, had died following an incident at Quayfoot Buttress in Borrowdale on May 27.

Sam, 31, had been climbing with a friend when he fell, sustaining “very serious injuries”, according to Keswick Mountain Rescue Team, which assisted with the rescue.

After receiving initial treatment on scene, the newly-recruited member of Langdale Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team was taken by air ambulance to the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle, and sadly passed away on Sunday (May 30).

Ambleside man Sam had recently teamed up with Kong Adventure Keswick colleague and friend Steve Chadwick, with the aim of climbing 18 of the oldest Cumbrian routes in old-fashioned footwear, completing the Old Routes in Old Boots challenge to raise awareness for Dewolf Bushcraft, which offers sanctuary and support for emergency service workers, NHS staff and veterans.

And while Steve is going to continue the feat in Sam’s memory, he will still dearly miss his “bouncy” and “truly good” colleague.

“Sam’s personality came around the corner before he did,” he said.

“He didn’t have any ego, or a single bad bone in his body – he just wanted to give everything he had to everybody, no matter what it was.

“He was just a proper nice bloke, and a big, bouncy ball of energy – six-foot-four of pure happiness, spreading joy wherever he went.”

Steve continued: “It’s hit us all [at Kong Adventure] pretty hard, and he’ll be missed so much.

“He was an ace instructor, top bloke and an all-round top guy. All our thoughts are with his family.”

Sharing a tribute on social media, Mountain Rescue England and Wales said: “Tragic news that climbing instructor and mountain rescue volunteer Sam Pilcher has died following a freak accident while climbing in the Lake District.

“Sam had recently joined Langdale Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team (LAMRT), and was looking forward to working with the team to help others.

“Our thoughts are with Sam’s family, friends and colleagues at this sad time.”

Sam leaves behind his mum, dad and twin sister, and all of his many friends, colleagues and loved ones.