A fundraising campaign for new road safety signage has raised over £5,000 in memory of a local cyclist who was tragically killed in a collision last year.
Cyclist Lorraine Barrow, 57, died in September 2020 when a speeding car collided with her as she cycled just yards from her home along the B3139 Mark Road, near Blackford.
The car driver was last week given a prison sentence of 12 months, suspended for two years, as reported here.
Lorraine’s family has begun a fundraising campaign in her memory for new speed indicator devices (SIDs) to warn motorists to slow down – and over £5,000 has been raised in just a matter of days.
Lorraine’s husband, Chris, told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “Lorraine, was my wife, my life partner, quite simply my one, and was killed outside our home on 17th September 2020 whilst riding her bicycle home from work just three days after our 35th wedding anniversary. I certainly won the marriage lottery when she agreed to marry me. She was the mother of our two children and devoted nanny to our grandson. She was a very private, kind person, always willing to help with a strong social conscience. She did not like violence or speed.”
“Lorraine rode her bicycle everywhere – Wedmore, Mark, Weare, Highbridge and, for some 13 years, she would say ‘nigh-on 13 years’, the mile journey to and from Hugh Sexey CofE Middle School. She loved her job and riding her bike, always saying that the cycle home was her ‘down time’.”
“She would never entertain getting on her bicycle without her helmet with rear facing light, cycling jacket with fluorescent piping and, most importantly, her high visibility vest.”
“In her memory and in the hope that it will make a difference to the local community and all those that use the B3139 for the school run, I am asking for donations to enable me to fund two SIDs. These SIDs are to be purchased via the parish council as they are the body recognised by the Highways department. Mark Parish Council have no budget for more SIDs.”
“To have an effect as soon as possible, I propose two phases. Phase 1: the purchase of two portable SIDs powered by rechargeable batteries. Phase 2: the conversion of the power source to solar panels. This will be a long-winded process as it will involve the location and installation of new posts. Phase 1 will have an immediate effect as the SIDs will be installed on existing posts. Phase 2 will allow the SIDs to be located on a more permanent basis and use an eco-friendly power source.”
Lorraine’s daughter, Abi Thierens says: “Hopefully, not only will people drive past our home at 30mph but continue to do so right through to Hugh Sexey, and to be more aware of entering a 30mph limit in Mark.”
“We know it’s too late for mum, but it doesn’t need to be too late for anyone else.”