Emotional tributes have been paid to “the nicest man you’ll ever meet”.

Cumbria police yesterday identified 64-year-old Chris Ritson as the pedestrian killed in a collision on Monday evening, east of Lanercost Primary School.

The family of Mr Ritson, who is from the Brampton area, gave an emotional statement saying: “He was a kind and gentle family man, loved by his family and respected by his work colleagues, friends and neighbours.

“Chris was involved in a tragic road traffic accident while moving sheep along the Lanercost to Birdoswald road but, despite the best efforts of emergency services, he lost his life.

“Chris’s passing has left a huge hole in his family and a great sense of loss in the wider community in which he lived and worked.

“He was the nicest person you could ever wish to meet and our thoughts go out to [his wife] Seema and all his family at this time.”

Devastated and shocked by the loss of a man he regarded as his best friend, Stephen Graham said: “Chris was the nicest person you could meet, he was hard-working and a conscientious member of staff.

“Every day for many years we worked together and never had a wrong word. He took pride in his work and loved to make a good job of whatever he did.

“Chris was very safety-conscious and if something didn’t look right he would make it right.

“It seems cruel that he has been taken from us by a horrific accident.”

Mr Graham added: “Chris and I not only worked together, he was like a best friend to me. He will be sadly missed every day and our thoughts go to his family at this time.”

Emergency service crews were called at shortly after 5.30pm on Monday..

Officers are investigating the collision and are appealing for anyone who witnessed the crash – or the moments leading up to it – to contact police on 101.