UK

Tandem Bike Couple Ross And Clare Simons Killed In Hit-And-Run Were About To Start IVF Treatment

29/01/2013 09:10 GMT

A married couple killed in a hit-and-run accident as they rode a tandem bicycle were about begin IVF treatment to start a family, devastated friends said on Monday night.

A 38-year-old man, who has not been named, handed himself into police hours after Ross and Clare Simons were killed in Hanham, near Bristol, hours after celebrating that they had been given the go-ahead for fertility treatment.

Mr Simons, 34, and his 30-year-old wife - described by friends as "two peas in a pod" - died when their tandem bicycle was in collision with a Citroen Picasso car in Hanham, near Bristol, on Sunday.

Their families paid tribute to them in a statement.

"Both of our families are completely devastated by the tragic events that took Ross and Clare from us," they said.

"A very special couple have been taken from us and we have no words to describe our loss.

"We would all appreciate it if our privacy was respected at this difficult time in order for us to grieve as a family."

About 100 people attended a vigil for the pair at the scene last night.

Mr Simons's father Edwin was among the mourners, as was his sister Kelly, who said: "This is a tribute to Ross and Clare, two amazing people."

The couple, who had been married for about 18 months and together for several years, celebrated the news of their IVF treatment the night before by having a meal with friends.

Family friend Diane Pullin, from Kingswood, Bristol, said the couple had been out with her daughter Shelley and son-in-law Darren.

She said: "They are a lovely family, so kind and so helpful. They'd just had news that they were able to have fertility treatment... everything to live for.

"They were trying for children and they had just been told they could have fertility treatment.

"It's just terrible and it shouldn't have happened. Two young people with their lives in front of them... snapped away just like that.

"They desperately wanted children and it wasn't happening.

"They'd just been given the go-ahead. They were so happy on Saturday night.

"My daughter says she's got helium balloons at the top of her stairs wishing them luck and she can't even look at them.

"Like she said to me just now, 'How can I be with them on Saturday night and they're not here now?'. It just shows that nobody knows. No one could have thought this on Saturday night.

"It's just so sad. It's all I can really say. Such a waste of a life. All these questions of 'Why?'."

Neighbours spoke of their shock that a hit-and-run could happen in the area.

Steve Camm was among people who left dozens of floral tributes at the scene.

He said: "There were like two peas in a pod. They were never apart. They could never do enough for anybody. They were caring people."

Fighting back tears, Mr Camm added: "They always did random stuff. You could never stop them from having fun. It's devastating."

An Avon and Somerset Police spokesman said: "Officers questioning a 38-year-old man on suspicion of death by dangerous driving have been granted further time to question him.

"A woman, aged 35, also arrested, has been released on police bail pending further inquiries.

"House-to-house inquiries continue and officers continue to appeal to anyone who witnessed this collision, or anyone who saw a blue Citroen Picasso in the area shortly before, to contact us on 101."

Mr and Mrs Simons died at the scene of the crash on Lower Hanham Road.

The car was speeding moments before the incident and officers indicated for it to pull over, but were forced to follow it after it sped off.

Moments later the car struck another vehicle before colliding with Mr and Mrs Simons's tandem.

Avon and Somerset Police has referred the matter to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.