Retired postwoman succumbs to injuries following collision with van and trailer

Gloucestershire police are appealing for witnesses after a 67-year old cyclist was killed on Saturday while taking part in an Audax ride with fellow members of the Dursley Road Club.

Pat Appleton was a retired postwoman from Berkeley, Gloucestershire who died as a result of injuries sustained when she was in collision with a van and trailer combination beneath a railway bridge in the Gloucestershire village of Coaley.

The incident occurred at about 12.30pm and although emergency services were quickly on the scene, facilitating a helicopter evacuation to Frenchay Hospital in Bristol, Mrs Appleton succumbed to her injuries.

A friend and fellow member of the Dursley RC, Gordon Evans, left the following tribute to his clubmate on the club website.

Pat was a true competitor who brought a touch of eccentricity into cycling. She time-trialled with Dursley RC for many years as well as road racing and taking part in numerous cyclo-cross meetings. A tough cookie, Pat was a regular Hard Rider and particularly enjoyed the hill climbs. Her forte, perhaps, was as a cross-country mountain biker, and she regularly featured in the national results and one season took the National Lady Vets title.

The fun touch, though, was never far away - instanced by completing the London to Brighton on a unicycle and winning the bog-snorkelling at the Llanwyrtyd Wells mountain bike event.

Her determination stood her in good stead some years ago when she fell out of an apple tree and broke her back, necessitating a permanent metal framework around her spine. But in a few months bionic Pat was back in the saddle doing what she loved most, riding her bike.

In latter years she joined Stroud Valleys CTC Group where she was a highly regarded and strong-riding member, though still riding the odd time trial with Dursley RC and competing in Audax events.

But perhaps she will best be remembered for her ready smile and infectious appetite for cycling. A one-off, Pat will be greatly missed in cycling circles and remembered with real affection.