Families back campaign
THE campaign was supported by the families of people who had died on the road. They included Tom and Shirley Abblitt from Ramsey whose only daughter, Karen, drowned aged 20 when her car went into the river. It was the Saturday of the May bank holiday in 1
THE campaign was supported by the families of people who had died on the road. They included Tom and Shirley Abblitt from Ramsey whose only daughter, Karen, drowned aged 20 when her car went into the river.
It was the Saturday of the May bank holiday in 1978 and Karen's first trip in her new Austin Mini.
It was around 5.45pm in broad daylight. Karen had finished work at Hilton's shoe shop in Ramsey High Street. She was driving to March to meet her fiancé to go to a dance.
The accident was at Leonard Child's bridge. It was never explained and
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nothing was found wrong with the car. Karen's parents called for action on the road at the time. Since then, they have had to hear about tragedy after tragedy along that road.
When he heard that average speed cameras were to be put on the road, Mr Abblitt said: "I am pleased they are putting the cameras up but they should also reduce the speed limit."
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As the campaign grew, more people stepped forward to tell their stories of people they knew who had died on the road.
In April, a former schoolfriend of Karen Abblitt, Denise Payne from
Ramsey, told the story of her friend and former sister-in-law, Joyce Van-Kerro.
Joyce, a mother of four, drowned when the car she was travelling in went into the river in December 1989.
Joyce, 39, had been returning to Ramsey after Christmas shopping for her children in Chatteris. She was to have met them to see the switching on of the Christmas lights.
Denise called for a plaque to be put up to all the people who had died on the Forty Road Bank road. She said: "We need big yellow warning signs at the beginning and the end of the road saying how many people have died there and saying please drive carefully.
"Joyce died for nothing. She had three sons and a daughter and nine grandchildren she didn't live to see."
Joyce's son, David, who also backed the campaign, said: "The speed cameras have got to be a good thing. I was along there the other day and people were hurtling along, overtaking at well over the speed limit. Fortunately, there were police on Benwick Bridge, which caused them to slow down.