Hundreds gather to remember Lincoln rugby coach Michael Beard

  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite
  • Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Hundreds of people gathered inside the Alive Church in Lincoln to pay their final respects to teacher and rugby coach Michael Beard, who died in a crash with a bus in March.

Family, friends and those who he coached at university attended the service, with many wearing rugby jerseys in honour of his commitment and passion for the sport.

Michael, who was a teacher at Lincoln Christ’s Hospital School, and also a door supervisor in the city, was cycling in the Wragby Road area of Lincoln when he collided with a school bus just before 3.20pm on March 25.

He leaves behind his wife Nicola and two children, Ella (6) and Jack (2).

A donations page was set up in support of Michael's family. Donations topped £10k in 24 hours.

A donations page was set up in support of Michael’s family. Donations topped £10k in 24 hours.

Over £17,000 has been raised so far by Michael’s friends to support his family since the tragic collision.

People can still make donations in Michael’s memory on the GoFundMe page here.

Tributes have been paid to the young teacher, and a donations page has been set up to support his family.

Tributes have been paid to the young teacher, and a donations page has been set up to support his family.

Rich Cowell met Michael at university in 2003 and lived with him in his final year. He said: “He taught me how to eat a whole pizza all in one!

“From a rugby point of view he was always up for training – he didn’t have a car and I was his chauffeur so I had to go training.

“He always encouraged me – when I got a bit fat or unfit he said that I’d got the ability and talent and I just needed to try so I did. The next year I won player of the year so I can’t say more than that.

“He was a genuine bloke who wore his heart on his sleeve, didn’t care what people thought about him and most of the time he was right anyway.”

Ed Goodison added: “He was a big character, fantastic leader and overall likeable guy. Whereas a lot of people like myself and Rich don’t do as much rugby these days he’s carried it on through the generations after which is brilliant to see and he leaves a great legacy from that side of things.”

Michael Beard

Michael Beard

Joey Sandling, who used to work with Michael, said: “He was the nicest guy that you could ever ask for – if you ever needed or wanted anything he would always help you.”

Luke Torres said: “Fortunately enough I was coached by Michael in the university and he was a great man then. I was blessed to know him in so many senses of the word – he was an idol for a lot of people.

“He was the spine that went through all our teams because we’ve got so many generations of the rugby team which he set up. He’s been the consistent thread throughout so we’re at a loss without him.

“We’ll have to try our best to pull together and I think it’s quite special how one of his last acts of great kindness was to bring us all back together.

“Obviously it was not for the best of circumstances but people saw each other who haven’t been in touch for years and I think that’s a great last contribution to the team.”

Michael Beard was sadly killed when hit by a bus in Lincoln.

Michael Beard was sadly killed when hit by a bus in Lincoln.