Shocked community unites to pay respects to mother and son killed in car crash

Photos from the funeral procession passing through Woodmansterne today

Photos from the funeral procession passing through Woodmansterne today

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A community in shock wept, embraced and lined the streets in silence today to watch the funeral procession of a mother and son who were killed in a car crash.

Nicola Morris, 29, and her son Kai Arnold, 11, died in a head-on collision on a bend in Banstead Road, Ewell, three weeks ago.

Schoolchildren and families paid their respects as their funeral cortège circled Kai’s school, Woodmansterne Primary School, and passed through Woodmansterne at about 12.30pm.

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Their funeral hearses, followed by friends and families in cars, then travelled to Banstead High Street where people lined the street.

Watching the procession pass by in the high street, Amanda Baxter, from Lambert Road, Banstead, said she knew the family and had come down to pay her last respects.

Ms Baxter said: "It’s a tragic loss and I think the whole community feels it. I think everyone was in shock, it’s hit the whole community."

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Ms Morris grew up in Woodmansterne and was engaged to David Arnold who was also injured in the crash. A trust fund is being set up for their younger son Alfie.

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Liz Mayger, who works at Tesco Express in Banstead High Street, where Ms Morris used to shop, said: "We live in Woodmansterne Village and it has affected us all. It’s very tragic. It’s shocked the whole community."

Warren Floyd, who was also waiting outside the store for the procession, said he and Ms Morris used to live in the same road, Lakers Rise in Woodmansterne. Mr Floyd said: "I have seen her grow up. She was someone in the village. It’s just a shock."

Val Martin, 73, from Garatts Lane, Banstead, said she had read about the accident and wanted to pay her respects. She said: "We are just devastated. The thought of it is devastating. I can’t think of anything worse. It’s awful."

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Although the cause of the accident is yet to be established, she said something should be done to make Banstead Road safer and to stop drivers from speeding there.

Martin Swain, from Monks Road, Banstead, said he had been saddened by the news reports and decided to drive down for today's procession.

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He said: "I thought I would pay my respects and see it go by. It’s nice everyone stood up as it came along the road."

Of Banstead Road, he said: "It’s quite a dangerous road. It’s quite fast. I think they need to do something down there." Ms Morris’ former colleague Kathryn McCourt, 25, has started a petition calling for a speed camera on Banstead Road.

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On Tuesday, Surrey Police said a woman in her 50s, who was injured in the crash, remains in a serious condition in hospital after the accident on Saturday July 5 at 10.30am.

Community Facebook group, What's on in Banstead, published information about the funeral procession on behalf of Ms Morris and Kai's family.

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Last night, a post on the social networking site said: "It would be a fitting tribute for Banstead Village to show it's support to the family also, so if you are around these locations please just stop for a moment when you see them come past."

Sign the petition at www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/local-council-responsible-add-a-speed-camera-on-banstead-road-to-stop-more-accidents

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