Cause of crash in which Hellesdon father died ‘will remain a mystery’, inquest hears

PUBLISHED: 17:55 01 March 2013 | UPDATED: 17:55 01 March 2013

Rachel Ellis, Dougie Ellis and Shaun Ellis. Picture submitted by family.

Rachel Ellis, Dougie Ellis and Shaun Ellis. Picture submitted by family.


A father-of-one from Hellesdon was killed after losing control of his motorbike less than three weeks after getting married, an inquest heard.

Shaun Ellis was on a social ride with friends when he crashed as he took a left-hand bend, hitting a verge and coming off his bike, before colliding with a car travelling in the opposite direction.

Despite attempts to save him, the 27-year-old, of Dennis Road, died at the scene of the crash, which happened on the evening of September 7 on the B1145 between Bawdeswell and Reepham, near Model Cottage Farm.

Norfolk deputy coroner Yvonne Blake yesterday recorded that Mr Ellis died from severe chest injuries as a result of a road traffic collision, adding: “The reason why Mr Ellis lost control of his vehicle and lost his life that evening will remain a mystery.”

Mr Ellis’s wife, Rachel, whom he married on August 20 last year, said afterwards that her husband was “someone you couldn’t help but love”, and had been “a brilliant dad” to their 20-month-old son, Dougie.

The inquest heard that Mr Ellis, a maintenance engineer at McDonald’s, was a “fairweather motorcyclist” who rode mainly on summer evenings and only in good conditions.

He had completed just 623 miles in the previous year, but “was a sensible rider”, said friend Timothy Cook.

Other riders with him on the night of the crash reported no obstructions on the road, and said the road conditions were dry.

A police crash investigation suggested that Mr Ellis may have misjudged the corner, while trees and shrubs by the road would also have shaded the road as dusk fell.

Ms Blake told driver Graham Jackets that he bore no blame for the tragedy, and commended him fighting so hard to save Mr Ellis’s life before paramedics arrived.

Following Mr Ellis’s death, his parents Stephen and Averil Ellis described him as “someone who would do anything for anyone”.

Mrs Ellis said: “He was the perfect son in every way - the perfect brother, daddy, husband and grandson. He loved his life.

“We had a tremendous summer leading up to the wedding. He loved Rachel and Dougie so much.”

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