The mother of a man who drowned off the coast of Majorca while unsuccessfully trying to save his young son has described him as "truly heroic".

George Selby, 28, and his son Louis, seven, died on the Spanish island on Saturday.

Reports said that Mr Selby, a shop worker from Hornchurch, Essex, dived into the sea despite not being able to swim after his son was washed into the water by a large wave.

The tragedy occurred at Cala Antena beach, a small bay near the resort of Calas de Mallorca, in the south east of the island.

In a statement released through the Foreign Office (FO), Christine Selby said: "George was passionate about his wife Abigail and their three sons.

"This tragedy that has befallen this family has devastated the lives of his wife, sons, and mother. George, Louis and their family were - and still are - loved by all that knew them.

"Please allow us to grieve for our devastating loss of a truly heroic husband, father, son, brother. And Louis our little bear."

Lifeguards tried to save the pair, but the rest of the family looked on as their efforts proved fruitless.

A red flag warning beachgoers not to swim is believed to have been flying at the time.

Reports said the family had arrived for a holiday on the Balearic island just hours earlier.