Harold Anderson

Author:
Date published: 24/03/2013
© Newbury Weekly News

 

HAROLD ANDERSON

 

 

 

 

 

BOY CYCLIST KILLED

 

ACCIDENT IN ENBORNE ROAD

 

CAR DRIVER EXONERATED

 

 

 

Jury's Rider at Inquest

 

 

 

          The driver of a motor-car which knocked down and fatally injured a nine-years old boy, was exonerated from blame at an inquest held at Newbury last (Wednesday) evening. In returning a verdict of “Accidental death” the jury added a rider that a 5ft. 6in. High hedge on the corner of Enborne and Kingsbridge roads should be cut down in order to give traffic a clearer view.

 

          The boy, Harold Anderson, of Camp Close, Newbury, a scholar at St Nicholas' Junior School, was riding a bicycle with two other lads from Kingsbridge-road into Enborne-road, and had turned towards Newbury when the accident occurred. Witnesses stated that he appeared to ride straight into the car, and the driver, Mr. Cyril Howlett, of “Foxgrove,” Enborne, had no chance of avoiding him. Mr. Howlett took him to Newbury Hospital in his car, but he died shortly afterwards from head injuries.

 

          The inquest was conducted by the Borough Coroner, Mr. S.V. Pinniger, who sat with a jury, of whom Mr. F.J. Cambridge was elected foreman. Mr. Ernest Brian, solicitor, of Reading, represented Mr. Howlett.

 

 

 

Father's evidence

 

 

 

          Evidence of identification was given by the boy's father Aubrey Arthur Anderson, a maltster. He said his son was riding a lady's cycle.

 

The Coroner: The front wheel brake was working?- No, the blocks had been taken off, but I myself had adjusted the back brake a week ago. The bicycle was otherwise in perfect condition.

 

          Was he a careful rider? -Very careful? - Very careful indeed. I had warn3ed him to be careful.

 

          Had you impressed on him the difference between major and minor roads?- Yes. He knew by riding out  of Camp Close. He always looked both ways.

 

          Witness added that his son had walked home to dinner and started back on his cycle.

 

A Fractured Skull

 

 

 

          Dr. Thomas G. Scott said he saw the boy at Newbury Hospital at 1.20 p.m. He was suffering from a fractured skull and severe injuries to the brain. He died at 2.35p.m. Without regaining consciousness.

 

          P.C. Pottinger said the accident occurred at the junction of Enborne-road and Kingsbridge-road. There was a pool of blood 14 feet from the kerb on the offside of the road going from Newbury and almost opposite the centre of Kingsbridge-road.

 

 

 

“Riding Fast.”

 

          An independent witness of the accident, William Noel Whiting, of Kingsbridge-road, a shop assistant, was the next to give evidence.

 

          He said he was cycling along Enborne-road, towards Kingsbridge-road. “When within a few yards of the junction of the two roads,” he said, “I saw one cyclist come out of Kingsbridge-road very steadily. He was followed by another cyclist riding very fast. A motor-car had just passed me, and I could see there was going to be a collision. The car tried to swerve to the right, and the cyclist also tried to turn, but the car struck the cycle's front wheel, tossing it to its left. The car was just to the left of the crown of the road when it overtook me.”

 

          Mr. Brian: You say the first boy came out quite steadily. Do you mean he looked both ways and saw that it was safe for him to pass? - Yes.

 

          So far as you could see, the driver of the car did all he could to avoid an accident?- Yes, it happened so quickly he could not avoid the boy.

 

          Witness agreed that the hedge made the corner a blind one.

 

          William Robert Rumball, of 39, Camp Close, Newbury, a bricklayer, said that while working on a chimney stack in Enborne-road, he heard a scream and a crash. He slipped down the ladder and found the boy lying in the middle of the road. “At first I thought the boy was dead, but I felt his pulse and it was still beating, so I asked the car-driver to take him to the Hospital.

 

          Mrs. Elizabeth Parsons, of 67, Kingsbridge-road, who was standing on the corner, said the boy turned right into the car. He did not stop at all.

 

 

 

Boy Friend's Evidence

 

          A ten-years-old boy, Gerald Walter Richard Weale, of 84, Camp Close, who was cycling with Harold Anderson, described the accident. He read the oath without a mistake, causing the Coroner to exclaim “Bravo” on doing so.

 

          Weale said that after returning from dinner, he and Anderson and another boy, Herbert Frith, rode on their bicycles to Kingsbridge-road to meet a friend. As they could not see him, they turned round, Frith being in front and Anderson last on entering Enborne-road. “Frith and I had almost reached Salcombe-road when I heard a crash, and looking round, saw Harold lying in front of the car,” he said.

 

 

 

Car Driver's Evidence

 

          Cyril Gould Howlett, of “Foxgrove,” Enborne, a poultry farmer, driver of the car, said that as he was approaching the corner of Knightsbridge-road, two boys  rode from Kingsbridge-road into Enborne-road and turned towards Newbury. Then a third boy appeared, apparently riding quickly. He braked and pulled hard to the right, but was unable to avoid a collision. The near front wing of the car collided with his front wheel, and as he fell, his head struck the near front column of the car.

 

          Witness added that he estimated his speed at 20 to 25 m.p.h., this piece of road being a restricted area.

 

          The jury, as stated returned a verdict of “Accidental Death” and exonerated Mr. Howlett. After they had added a rider regarding the hedge, the Coroner asked if it was not the houses on the corner which also obstructed the view.

 

          Inspector Weal: The obstruction is caused by the hedge.

 

 

 

          The jury expressed sympathy with the dead boy's parents, and asked that their fees should be handed to them. The Coroner and Mr. Brain, on behalf of Mr. Howlett, also expressed their sympathy.

 

 

 

Newbury Weekly News 30th January 1936.

 

                     

                     

 

 

 

         

Sources:Newbury Weekly News 30th January 1936

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