Charity co-founder died after crash in icy conditions on Downham Market to Wisbech road, inquest hears

A leading charity fundraiser in the Fens died after she lost control of her vehicle on an icy road and slid into the path of a lorry, an inquest heard yesterday.

June Scotting, 54, was heading towards Wisbech along the A1122 in Nordelph on December 17 last year to run a charity market stall when her white van collided with a sugar beet lorry travelling in the opposite direction.

The 54-year-old, who lived in Hilgay, near Downham Market, was one of the founders of Cat Welfare, Wisbech. Only two days before her death she had helped to raise �800 by leading her team in running a charity bingo evening at Emneth village hall.

Lorry driver Roderick Chisholm told yesterday's inquest hearing in King's Lynn he was heading to the sugar beet factory in Wissington when the accident happened at 8am.

He said: 'I had just gone over Nordelph Bridge heading towards Downham Market, when I approached a bend and noticed the white van coming towards me.

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'As the van left the bend, the rear began to kick out and was in my line of travel. I had no escape route - the accident was unavoidable.'

The collision with the lorry caused the van to spin clockwise and also hit the side of the lorry.

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Two days after the fatal crash, Mr Chisholm received a letter from Mrs Scotting's husband, Colin Hawes, in which he said he didn't blame the lorry driver for what happened.

PC Keith Sainsbury, who attended the scene after the fatal crash, also spoke at yesterday's inquest hearing at King's Lynn County Court.

He said: 'When I started work that morning the roads were treacherous and I found it very difficult to control my own car. As I made my way to the scene, the roads were so bad I had to turn my blue lights off because it would have been dangerous to make progress at speed.'

The inquest also heard the section of road had been gritted at 7.21pm the previous evening with 15 grams of salt per square metre.

A report by PC Wendy Frary, collision investigator at Norfolk Police, found no mechanical defects with the van but revealed Mrs Scotting's seat belt failed to restrain her in her seat.

Norfolk coroner William Armstrong recorded a verdict of death as a result of a road traffic collision.

Mrs Scotting was born in Stoke Newington, London, and grew up in Enfield, Middlesex. She moved to Norfolk in 1987 and set up the Cat Welfare, Wisbech 16 years ago.

The group has thrived attracting more volunteers, donors and needy cats each year and Mrs Scotting's principal love was fundraising for her group.

Mrs Scotting had many other outside interests including bridge at which she represented both Norfolk and Essex.

She was also a member of West Norfolk Flower Club and line danced weekly in Denver village hall.

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