WITNESSES have spoken of the desperate attempts to save a baby who died after being trapped beneath a 4x4.

The Toyota hit 15-month-old Finlay Woods before crashing into the railings of Selwyn Primary School, in Cavendish Road, Highams Park.

Katie Gutierruez-Perez, 39, has been charged with causing death by dangerous driving, drink driving and driving without insurance.

Witnesses, many of whom had gathered to pick up their children from the primary school, described the horrifying aftermath of the tragic accident.

People rushed to the car in a desperate attempt to free the baby, who was acccompanied by his mother and grandmother when disaster struck.

Another mother at the school, Meryam Mustafa, of Aldriche Way, said: "I saw the mother sitting on a bench crying and bleeding from her head.

"Then I saw a baby inside a pram under a car. She was crying for him, she was screaming and asking what had happened to him."

"There were maybe ten men trying to lift the car. Everyone was crying and praying."

The toddler arrived by air ambulance at Whipps Cross Hospital at 4.12pm yesterday (Thursday) in a serious condition but died soon after.

His mother was waiting for her other son to come out of the school at the time of the accident.

Shocked parents this morning described the Woods family, who had four children, as well-liked and well-respected.

"The family is well-known, they are lovely," said one, who did not want to give her name. A father of a child at the school added: "I can't imagine what it's going to be like for them, coming to school on a Friday and you're missing one."

Mrs Mustafa, whose son used to be in the same class as Finlay's brother, added: "I feel very angry and sad. He was a happy baby.

"I would see him with his mum every day. One minute later and it could've been my son."

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "It is believed the vehicle mounted the kerb and then crashed into the baby."

As well as the air ambulances, two ambulances, two fast response cars and fire crews were sent to the scene.

An inquest is likely to open and adjourn today.

The driver had been trying to stop her car being towed away when the accident happened.

A council spokesman said that council contractors in the area, Redcorn, had picked up that her car was illegal on its automatic number plate recognition system.

To be picked up the car needed to be on the road without tax or insurance.

He said: "It was illegal and should not have been on the road."

The woman jumped into the car and drove round the corner hitting several other cars along the way.

Witnesses are urged to call the Collision Investigation Unit at Chadwell Heath on 8345 4905.