Cyclist Killed in Fog at Dunmow

The Essex Chronicle - Friday 27 November 1931Friday 27 November 1931



Sunday morning at 9.15, while a thick fog prevailed, Mr. Stanley Edward Evans, 29, who lived Church End, Stebbing, was killed while riding his motor cycle Gussetts Hill, near Dunmow.

Mr. Evans, who was employed as a clerk at Felsted Sugar Factory, was riding his motor cycle there, with Miss Norah Carder, of Dunmow, also a clerk at the factory, on his pillion seat.

There was a collision with a motor van in the fog, and Mr. Evans was killed. Miss Carder sustained leg injuries, and was removed to Chelmsford Hospital. The deceased was married, and leaves a widow and one young child. Miss Carder's home is at Burnham-on-Crouch.

Mr. Evans was well known in Stebbing, where he had resided for over two years. was Scoutmaster of the Stebbing Boy Scouts, and took a keen interest in the movement. He was a member of the Congregational Church choir.

On Monday afternoon Dr. Macdonald held inquest at Dunmow Isolation Hospital.

Patrick O'Brien, aged 18, said he was on trial at Bedford Egg Farm, Dunmow. On Sunday morning drove in a van from the farm to attend church at Bocking, and intended calling on the way back at Olive's Farm, Dunmow, to collect two cases of eggs. Mr. J. T. Hughes, a partner in the Bedford Egg Farm, drove the van to Bocking, and witness drove it back. It was very foggy. He could just see the near side kerb. At the top Gussett's Hill, Dunmow, he was driving on the crown of the road at 15 miles an hour, when a motor cyclist with a lady on the pillion suddenly loomed in front ten yards away. Both vehicles were moving slowly, but before witness had time to apply his brakes or do anything the cycle hit the front of the van.

Witness at once stopped and got out of the van, which had run into the bank on the off side of the road. The cyclist lay with his head on the kerb. The girl was sitting on the kerb. The man's pulse was still beating, but he died soon afterwards. P.c. Keeble, Dunmow, said the front of the van was completely smashed. The road was 20ft. 3in. wide, and marks on the road showed that the motor cycle had 6ft. in which to pass the van. There was a dense fog the time; it was impossible to see more than five to seven yards ahead.

P.c. Harrington, Dunmow, spoke to conveying Miss Carder to Chelmsford Hospital in an ambulance. On the way she said, "I know nothing whatever about the accident. It was a bad morning, cold and foggy. I had a big fur collar my coat, and I pulled it up over my head and got down behind Mr. Evans. I saw and heard nothing."

The jury returned a verdict of accidental death, due to the dense fog, and added that in their opinion the accident might have been avoided if both vehicles had had lights on.