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Sister of Queen's physician killed while cycling calls for safer streets for cyclists

Inquest held into death of Dr Peter Fisher, killed in lorry collision on Cycle to Work day in Holborn last year

The sister of Dr Peter Fisher, the physician to the Queen who was killed while cycling in central London last August, says that his death should act as a catalyst to make the capital’s streets safer for bike riders.

The 67-year-old, a world expert on homeopathic medicine, died after he was struck by a lorry close to Holborn Underground station at around 9.30am on 15 August – which last year was designated National Cycle to Work Day.

The Guardian reports that at an inquest at St Pancras Coroner’s Court into his death, CCTB footage was shown in which Dr Fisher was seen moving into the path of a lorry as he overtook a vehicle in front of him.

Lorry driver Samantha Southouse told the inquest that before moving forward in congested traffic, she checked her mirrors, but did not see Dr Fisher. She said: ““I moved and I heard pedestrians shouting ‘Stop the truck’ and immediately I did.”

According to police collision investigator PC Brian Gamble, the lorry was moving at no more than 8mph but the driver’s view of Dr Fisher would have been obscured, with the convex mirrors providing a distorted view because of where he was positioned on the road.

Dr Fisher’s sister, Suzie Herne, said in a statement that was read out at the inquest: “In order to save further precious lives, we urge the mayor of London to urgently address the issue of cycle safety in London by looking at people-prioritised streets and improved lorry design.

“Dr Peter Fisher was a remarkably gifted and special man whose death is a tragic and irreplaceable loss, not only for his family and friends who loved him dearly, but also to the cause of medicine and homeopathy in this country and worldwide.”

Coroner Mary Hassell, who recorded a verdict of accidental death, concluded that Dr Fisher died as a result of multiple injuries. 

Following his death, London Cycling Campaign held a protest at Holborn to highlight the dangers the street layout there poses to cyclists, saying: “This is the fourth cycling fatality in this small tangle of one-way streets and junctions in five years.”

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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