September 14, 2021 2.51 pm This story is over 26 months old

Man who caused crash that killed cyclist spared jail

He failed to see the cyclist on a roundabout

A motorist caused a fatal collision when he failed to see a cyclist on a roundabout and drove into him, Lincoln Crown Court was told on Tuesday.

Vincent Sharp, 66, was on his way to the Tesco store in Skegness, when the incident occurred at around 6am on August 3 last year.

Michael Cranmer-Brown, prosecuting, said that cyclist Wilfred Meakin, 75, was clearly visible as he went around the Clock Tower roundabout in the resort, but Sharp drove into him from behind knocking him off his bicycle.

Mr Meakin, who was delivering newspapers, was thrown to the ground and suffered serious head injuries including a fractured skull.

He was taken to Hull Royal Infirmary but passed away three days later as a result of his injuries.

Mr Cranmer-Brown said: “The defendant said he was blinded by the sun but he was plainly not keeping a proper look out for road users ahead of him.”

Sharp later told police in a prepared statement that he was planning to go shopping at Tesco when the store opened.

The prosecutor said: “The defendant said that as he approached the roundabout he slowed and looked. There was nothing on the roundabout and he continued forward.

“He said that very close to the roundabout he was blinded by the sun and couldn’t see for a moment. There was a bump. He realised he had hit the cyclist and stopped.”

Sharp and two passers-by did their best to help Mr Meakin until the emergency services arrived at the scene.

The court was told that Sharp had no previous convictions and has a clean driving licence.

Mr Meakin, a father of five who had been married for 56 years, was well-known in the Skegness area for his helping other people and for his charity work.

Vincent Sharp, 66, of Lancaster Avenue, Skegness, admitted causing the death of Wilfred Meakin by careless driving on August 3, 2020.

Richard Dawson, in mitigation, said Sharp was wracked with guilt for what happened and expressed his condolences to the family and friends of Mr Meakin.

“He has expressed remorse from the outset of this case.”

Mr Dawson said that Sharp was in poor health and able only to walk short distances.

“He is now very much house-bound,” said Mr Dawson.

Sharp was given a 21 week jail sentence suspended for two years and disqualified from driving for three years. He was also ordered to pass an extended re-test before he can legally drive again.

Judge Catarina Sjolin Knight told him: “If you had stopped at the give way sign and checked more carefully this collision could have been avoided.”