THE family of a pedestrian struck by a vehicle outside a city pub have paid tribute to a man with a “smile as big as his heart”.

Paul Collinson, 54, died in the early hours of Monday after a collision next to the County Hotel Pub, on Walker Road, in Newcastle, on Sunday night.

Following an overwhelming response from the public, Mr Collinson's three children Donna, Jessica and Paul have issued a statement on behalf of the family.

The family said they were touched by the kind words pouring out from across the community and said Mr Collinson, of Walker, Newcastle, would be truly missed by all.

“We just wanted to say how grateful we all are as a family for the amazing response we’ve seen from the community,” they said.

“It has been amazing to see how much our dad was truly loved by everyone.

"He had an infectious smile as big as his heart.

“Even though he’s gone we know that he will live on in people’s hearts through their memories and the stories they will tell of him.

“Our hearts are broken and we love him more than he could ever know."

An investigation is ongoing into the circumstances surrounding Mr Collinson’s death and Northumbria Police have arrested a 19-year-old man in connection with the collision.

Three other people remain in hospital with serious but non-life-threatening injuries.