March 6, 2023 9.00 pm This story is over 15 months old

Van driver avoids jail after taking responsibility for fatal crash

Cyclist Stuart Lees died following the collision

A van driver who admitted causing the death of a cyclist by careless driving was today (Mon) given a suspended jail sentence.

Dean Holderness, 36, was involved in a collision with cyclist Stuart Lees, 50, on the A1104 at Snape Hill, Saleby, near Alford in March 2020.

Mr Lees was airlifted to hospital with serious injuries but Lincolnshire Police confirmed on April 1, 2020 that he had died.

Holderness, now 37, of Marston Crescent, New Lodge, Barnsley, was initially charged with the more serious offence of causing Mr Lees’ death by dangerous driving, which he denied.

And on the second day of his trial at Lincoln Crown Court in January, Holderness pleaded guilty to a count of causing death by careless driving on the A1104 on March 23, 2020.

The Crown Prosecution Service offered no evidence on the original charge and the jury were discharged from reaching a verdict.

Judge James House KC adjourned sentence for the preparation of a probation report and a psychological report on Holderness.

Holderness was today sentenced to four months imprisonment suspended for 18 months by Judge House.

He was also to complete 200 hours of unpaid work in the community and was disqualified from driving for 12 months.

In a statement read out after Holderness entered his guilty plea his barrister Simon Eckersley said on his behalf: “I will plead guilty to causing death by careless driving. I accept that when I attempted to pass Stuart Lees, in the circumstances of the situation including the prevailing wind, I did not give Mr Lees sufficient space.

“This was driving below the required standard.”

Mr Eckersley said Holderness, a delivery driver and father-of-two, had also demonstrated considerable remorse.

MyLocal Lincolnshire is the new home of The Lincolnite. Download the app now