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National Highways warns of "significant dangers" in racing time trials on major roads following A11 death

Cheryl Tye was killed last Sunday after being hit by a van driver while competing in the East District 50-mile time trial championship

National Highways, the body responsible for England's motorways and some A-roads, has warned there are "significant dangers" to holding cycling time trials on major roads.

The comment comes just over a week since Cheryl Tye was hit and killed by a van driver as the rider competed in CC Breckland's 50-mile East District Championship on the A11 in Norfolk.

Emergency services, including an air ambulance, were called to the scene at around 9.40am on Sunday 26 June, but the 52-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.

On the same road in 2010, a rider was airlifted to hospital with a suspected broken vertebrae following a collision 175 miles into a 12-hour event, while last year a time trial participant was seriously injured after being hit from behind by a van driver between Snetterton and Shropham.

In response to the most recent incident, a National Highways spokesperson told the Eastern Daily Press there are "significant dangers".

"For a number of years, we have warned the groups about the significant dangers in running time trials on major A-roads. But from a legal perspective there is nothing we can do to stop them," the spokesperson said.

Norfolk Police added that the CC Breckland event had complied with requirements, including: 28 days notice, description of the course, number of competitors and names of officials.

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National Highways said it will continue to issue advice to ensure guidelines surrounding insurance, race marshals and signage are followed, and twice yearly meetings with cycling groups, the police and the road network body will continue in the area.

"We are working with our partners and event organisers as the safety of all our road users remains a priority," Chief Inspector Jonathan Chapman said.

"A beautiful spirit"

Cheryl's husband Chris was also taking part in last Sunday's time trial and said his wife "touched everyone she came across in a positive way and will be sorely missed."

"She was my soulmate, a beautiful spirit and I loved the time I had with her," he said.

Former mayor of Hadleigh, Frank Minns, added: "Her death is a terrible tragedy, and the only comfort I can find in it is that it happened while she was doing the thing she loved best, competing."

Earlier in June, GB triathlete Rebecca Comins was killed while taking part in a time trial on the A40 near Raglan in Monmouthshire.

Police arrested a 47-year-old man from the Abergavenny area on suspicion of causing death by careless driving who was subsequently released under investigation.

Dan joined in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.

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