Mum Stages Sit-In On Road Where Teenage Daughter Died

14/08/2014 16:54 | Updated 22 May 2015

cyclist memorial RB 03 04-27-06 two memorials for cyclists killed on the roads SEE ORIGINAL PHOTO RE

A devastated mother staged a sit-in at a cycle ride in memory of her daughter to highlight her grief at the 13-year-old's death.

Nazan Fennell, 46, sat down in the middle of the road where schoolgirl Hope Fennell was killed by a lorry in November, 2011.

A cycle ride in memory of the teenager by the the Live in Hope campaign - which wants proximity sensors to be fitted to lorries so that drivers receive blind spot warnings - was in progress at the time. The police were called as Ms Fennell caused half-an-hour tailbacks along the busy road.

When asked to move on by officers because the traffic was at a standstill, the heartbroken mum replied: "So what? My life has been destroyed."

Mum stages sit-in on road where teenage daughter died

Hope died after becoming trapped under the wheels of an 18-ton lorry as it pulled away from a crossing on a green light after the driver, Darren Foster, 38, failed to spot her. He is currently serving a six-month prison sentence after pleading guilty to dangerous driving.

It was revealed in court that he had been sending text messages to his girlfriend while at the wheel and had then climbed back into his lorry to delete all the texts as Hope lay dying in the road.

Nazan told reporters yesterday that she had not intended to start a protest at the memorial event, but was moved to do so after speaking to a shopkeeper who had seen her daughter in her dying moments.

"A shopkeeper came out of his store as we reached the spot where Hope died," Ms Fennel told the Birmingham Mail. "He was an eye-witness. He said he had been working that day, and saw a beautiful young girl lying in the road. He told me she looked at peace. That really affected me. I hadn't heard that before."

The man's words prompted Nazan to stand in front of a lorry similar to that which had killed her daughter.

The bereaved mum later gave a speech to supporters outside a church near to where Hope died.

"The community has a really serious issue on its hands," she said. "There will be more people dying. Since we lost Hope I have kept campaigning in her memory – but the politicians have done nothing."

She had previously told her local paper that Foster knew he had the 'potential to kill' when he chose to text while driving.

"He made that choice, it's like picking up a gun. Hope didn't stand a chance," she said. "The fact he was not charged with Hope's death and deleted those texts is a scandal," she added.

"I don't know if I will recover from this. I'm devastated by the result. I don't have a family left. I live in a haze, I live in denial that she'll come back home."


Suggest a correction