Lorry driver arrested after accident near Maud Heath’s Causeway
The village of Sutton Benger has been left in shock by the sudden death of former Wellesley Arms landlady Barbara Wallace.
Mrs Wallace, 77, was killed in an accident on the Langley Burrell road near Maud Heath’s Causeway on Friday afternoon.
Police were called to the collision involving Mrs Wallace’s blue Kia Rio and a white Ford Iveco lorry at 2.15pm. Officers tried to resuscitate Mrs Wallace but were unable to save her.
Two rapid response units from the Great Western Ambulance service attended the collision on Friday.
The 56-year-old lorry driver from Gloucestershire, who suffered minor injuries, was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and released on bail.
The road was closed for eight hours while police carried out a crime scene investigation, which involved a reconstruction.
Mrs Wallace was president of the Women’s Institute in the village and in 2006 was ladies captain at Chippenham Golf Club.
Neighbour Catherine Jones said: “She was a lovely lady, always happy, and she always stopped to have a chat and a laugh.”
Mrs Wallace moved to Sutton Benger with her husband Don in the 1980s and they ran the Wellesley Arms pub in High Street together for many years before retiring in the 1990s.
Mr Wallace died in 2002 while they were on holiday in Australia. They had a son, John, and two daughters, Louise and Emma.
Friend Ron Barker said: “She and Don made the pub a great big hit and became well-known, not only in Sutton Benger but in all the surrounding villages and even Chippenham. He was an entertainer and she was a strong woman.
“She had a very strong sense of humour and a most infectious laugh. When she laughed, everyone had a chuckle.”
Kathy Robins met Mrs Wallace at the golf club and said they became good friends.
She said: “She was gregarious, smart and absolutely loved life. She was adored by her family and loved her grandchildren.”
Sutton Benger WI president Pauline Ratcliffe said: “Barbara was bubbly, very active, she belonged to a lot of organisations. She was always beautifully turned out, immaculate, that’s probably why she looked younger than she was.
“She was very popular, a lovely woman and everyone in the village will say the same.”
Langley Burrell Parish Council clerk Dave Kilmister said he would be calling for danger signs to be put up before the tight bend where the incident happened.
He said: “It is a very dangerous bend and there are no warning signs at all.
"The parish council has been concerned about the traffic on that road for years.
“The amount of lorries has increased, with them shortcutting through the village from the motorway to Calne.”
Police are appealing for witnesses of the accident to call 101.