Cyclist’s death on ride ruled a tragic accident

Family: Mark Buckley with two of his daughters, Samantha and Katie
Family: Mark Buckley with two of his daughters, Samantha and Katie
Share this article
Have your say

A cyclist told his friend where he would like his ashes to be scattered – moments before he was killed falling from his bike.

Father-of-four Mark Buckley, 51, from Claughton-on-Brock, near Garstang, was riding through the Trough of Bowland on September 5 last year with colleague Lee Double when he failed to negotiate a bend and struck a wall.

Mr Double told an inquest the pair were on a 40-mile route Mr Buckley was familiar with.

He said: “It was a social ride. We rode along with each other talking about life, discussing the ways of the world and work.

“We got to the top of the climb just before where Mark had his accident. He was waiting for me at the top, near a memorial plaque for cyclists and he commented if anything happened to him, that’s where he would want his ashes spread.”

The duo set off again heading for Dunsop Bridge where they were going to stop for a coffee.

During the descent, Mr Buckley, a physical education officer at Garth Prison, Leyland, was ahead of Mr Double and not always in sight because of the bend.

When Mr Double got to the bottom of the hill, he found him lying face down in a stream.

He tried to call 999 but had no mobile phone signal. He flagged down a couple in a car who raised the alarm at a nearby farm.

Colin McNutt, a passing motorist, told the inquest he had tried to call 999 but was surprised to have no signal.

He said: “I could see Lee was shook up. I was talking to him, trying to find out his name, trying to make conversation. He was holding Mark’s head out of the water. He said Mark was getting heavy for him. I asked him if he wanted to swap over.”

In a statement, pathologist Bianca De Gama Rose said Mr Buckley died from multiple injuries, including a fractured skull, in hospital.

PC Richard Roberts, senior police collision investigator, said Mr Buckley’s GPS system had recorded a speed of 44.2mph, he had been wearing a good quality helmet and his bike was in a good condition.

The inquest heard it was a dry, bright and sunny day and the road conditions were decent.

Deputy coroner Simon Jones recorded a verdict of accidental death.

After the inquest Mark’s widow Sharon said: “It’s so sad. It is such a shame. He was full of life, he lived life to the full. It is very futile.”