Service to remember road crash victims
A campaigner who lost her daughter in a road crash has sent a message to other families whose loved ones have been killed on the roads - that they do not have to suffer alone.
An emotional service will be held at Norwich's St John's Cathedral next month to recognise World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims and organisers say it is a rare chance for people to come together to share their pain and celebrate the lives of their loved ones.
Around 500 people attended last year's event at Norwich Cathedral and organisers Liz Voysey and Bridget Wall want to once again create a poignant display of photographs and personal details about the crash victims.
Ms Voysey, from Norwich Road in Dereham, has helped organise the service since 2006. Her 19-year-old daughter, Amy Upcraft, was killed by a speeding van driver on the A47 at North Tuddenham in 2004.
She said: 'Sadly in the last 12 months there will be many other families who are now facing the devastating loss of a loved one in this tragic way, with at least 40 in Norfolk.
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'Yet the government seems to be hell bent on removing the proven methods that help moderate the actions of drivers who regard themselves above the law - such as reducing money for speed cameras and talking about increasing the speed limit on motorways to 80mph.
'This announcement was like a knife through my heart. The man who killed my daughter was doing around 80mph so, it was like sending a personal message to me and telling the rest of society that it was okay to kill Amy.'
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Ms Voysey said, she, like many people who lose loved ones in crashes, felt isolated and alone, with little support, which is why she believes the services for the families of victims is so important.
She said: 'We want to reach out to as many people as we possibly can. These are sudden, violent deaths which are totally preventable and people are left devastated.
'Many of us feel we do not get justice and we don't get the support that victims of crime get, yet we are the forgotten victims. I had to sit there and go through a catalogue to pick out my daughter's coffee and go to her building society to effectively erase her from existence.
'That's why the service is so important. You can come together with other people who have had to go through awful things like that. It's a rare chance for us to come together.'
Ms Voysey, a campaigner for the charity Roadpeace, said the aim of the photographs was to show that those killed in road crashes are not statistics, they were real people who have families who loved them.
She said: 'It's a public recognition of them. It is such a moving occasion. It's a time of solidarity and to let people know that they are not alone, that there are other people out there to support them.'
The service will be held at St John's Cathedral, Earlham Road, Norwich, from 3.30pm on Sunday, November 20.
To register your interest in attending RSVP Liz Voysey, 280 Norwich Road, Dereham, Norfolk NR20 3AY or call 01362 697617 and to send photographs to be displayed at the cathedral email Liz.email@example.com