Pensioner admits causing wife's death in car crash

PUBLISHED: 11:26 29 April 2019 | UPDATED: 11:59 29 April 2019

Exeter Magistrates' Court. Picture: Archant

Exeter Magistrates' Court. Picture: Archant

Archant

Court hears the defendant had no driving licence or insurance

A pensioner has admitted causing his wife's death in a head-on crash near Honiton last summer.

Barry Woodhouse, 68, was driving his wife Jill and son David in his Toyota Yaris on the A35 on a day in July when he lost control of his vehicle on a sharp bend and collided with a van.

Exeter magistrates were told that Woodhouse – who had no licence or insurance - had only taken over the driving from his wife some five to ten minutes earlier, on their trip from Hampshire.

The court heard on Thursday (April 25) that he weaved over solid white lines on a bend at Tower Hill and into the wrong lane. It was too late to correct his error before the impact with the van at a combined speed of around 55mph.

After the collision Woodhouse and his wife were airlifted to Plymouth's Derriford Hospital where his wife died. He suffered a broken sternum in the crash but his son was not badly hurt.

Woodhouse, of Goonbarrow Walk, Bugle, Cornwall, admitted causing his wife's death by careless driving and having no insurance or a driving licence.

Prosecutor Richard Parkhouse said: “He has never attempted to get a licence or insurance.”

District Judge Jo Matson committed the case to Exeter Crown Court to be sentenced next month and imposed an interim ban on Woodhouse.

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