Family's tribute to tragic teenager

A heartbroken family last night paid tribute to their fun-loving teenager who was killed in a tragic accident which happened just a few yards from their home.

A heartbroken family last night paid tribute to their fun-loving teenager who was killed in a tragic accident which happened just a few yards from their home.

Robert Hostler, 17, and his friend Claire Stubberfield, 19, died after the car in which they were travelling was involved in a collision on the A47 near Wisbech, close to the junction of Broadend Road, Walsoken.

Last night, his family said they had been overwhelmed by the messages of support and condolences from Robert's friends, who had visited in large numbers to pay their respects to the teenager who always had a smile on his face.

The loss was made all-the-more painful as the accident happened just yards from the family home in Broadend Road.


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His sister heard the crash from the house and the whole family had rushed out to see if they could help.

Poignant tributes have been left at the scene, along with dozens of flowers and two Chelsea football flags, as Robert was an avid fan.

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His death was one of a number of fatal accidents in a bleak few days on Norfolk's roads.

Last night, a driver was being questioned after a black Fiat Punto was in collision with a female cyclist, who died of serious head injuries.

The accident happened yesterday morning at St Olaves, near Yarmouth, on the B11074 at Herringfleet about half a mile from the A143 turn- off.

Last night, police were still trying to identify the cyclist.

Meanwhile, police are also investigating a collision in which a 35-year-old motorcyclist was killed in a head-on collision close to a popular picnic site in Thetford Forest.

The victim was riding a yellow Suzuki DR400 towards Mundford on the A134 at Lynford, near Thetford, on Sunday at 4.25pm when he was in collision with a red Peugeot 106 travelling in the opposite direction.

A 37-year-old man from Kent, who was driving the Peugeot, was uninjured.

But last night, the family of Robert Hostler - his father Robert, mother Joy and sisters Chantel, 19, and Samantha, 16 - said scores of tributes had been left on the popular internet site Bebo and that many friends had visited the home to pass on their respects.

Mr Hostler said: “He was just a typical teenager, that's all you can say really. He loved going out with his friends, and he had so many.

“He lived a normal teenager life and just enjoyed himself. He was best described as fun loving, always smiling and laughing and a cheeky boy.”

Robert was a pupil at Ramnoth Junior School and then Marshland High School.

He left to study agriculture at the College of West Anglia and had recently started a job at Riviera Construction, in Wisbech.

His family said he absolutely loved the job and that the people he worked with all loved him as he was always so much fun to be around.

Before starting the job, he had said he would like to have joined the army and had passed the exam to join, however his family felt this was becoming a fading ambition as he loved his new job so much.

Robert was a keen animal lover, and kept sheep and pigs at his family home, and also looked after his dogs and his grandad's horse.

He was a huge fan of Only Fools and Horses and would love to watch old DVDs of the series.

His mother said he had lots of friends and he was part of a group who had named themselves the Wisbech Boys.

His best friend, Liam Simpson, had had Robert's name and dates of birth and death tattooed on his body in memory of his friend.

Robert had been with friends when the accident happened and was just travelling home after a night out.

His friend, Claire, had been driving, as Robert had not yet passed his driving test. Another girl who was a passenger in the car survived.

A date for the funeral has not been set.

An inquest into the deaths is due to be held today.

The accident happened on Wednesday night at about 10.30pm when Miss Stubberfield's Kia car was involved in a collision with a Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The driver of the Cherokee, a 42-year-old man, was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. He was released on bail pending further inquiries.

Anyone with information about the St Olaves accident can contact Sgt Andy Hood on 0845 456 4567.

Anyone with information about the Lynford accident can contact PC Mark Hagon on the same number.

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