Service of remembrance for road crash victims

Bereaved families who have lost loved ones in car crashes will come together for an emotional remembrance service at Norwich Cathedral next month.

The service helps support people whose lives have been devastated by the loss or serious injury of a loved one following a car crash in the county.

Dereham woman Liz Voysey, whose 19-year-old daughter Amy Upcraft died after being hit by a careless driver on the A47 in 2004, has organised the annual service with Bridget Wall.

It is usually attended by about 500 people.

Mrs Voysey, a member of the RoadPeace charity for crash victims, said: 'This service has proved to be much welcomed by bereaved families of road crash victims and the injured.

'It is a time to be with others who have been devastated and suffering in the same way.

'It is a time of solidarity when the tears can fall freely and a sense of connecting with others who understand the feelings of loss, despair and anger that we all share and to know we are not alone.

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'It is a rare opportunity to be with others who have suffered this unique type of grief and where the precious lives of our loved ones are honoured and acknowledged publicly, nationally and internationally. For the most part we are the bereaved of the 'forgotten victims', as most crashes and collisions go unnoticed by society for many reasons.'

The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims takes place at Norwich Cathedral on Sunday, November 21 at 3.30pm. As in the past, there will be an opportunity for families and friends to have photographs of their loved ones on a display in the cathedral. Mrs Voysey added: 'On my journey of the last six-and-a-half years, I have met with many people living with the tragedy, shock and horror of losing someone on our roads.

'Sadly I have discovered that the support and help desperately needed just is not there - most especially with counselling and contact with others on the same path, which is one of the many reasons this service is so important.

'It's a very moving service and from the comments we receive from those who attend, we know that they find it very comforting and supportive.'

Refreshments will be available after the service, which alternates every year between Norwich Cathedral and St John's Roman Catholic Cathedral in Norwich.

The Venerable Jan McFarlane, spokesman for the Diocese of Norwich, said: 'The annual RoadPeace service brings a great deal of solace and support for those who have been bereaved as a result of a road traffic crash, or those who continue to suffer injuries sustained in such crashes.

'The opportunity to remember, and to meet with those who have gone through similar trauma helps people to know that they are not alone.'

To have a photograph of a loved one on display, contact Liz Voysey by calling 01362 697617 or email Lizvoysey@sky.com