Inquest: Driver died in crash with car carrying Lord Ashdown

An inquest has heard how a driver died when he lost control of his vehicle and careered into a car carrying Lord Ashdown and his wife before hitting a van.

Mark Hurford, 49, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash, the A356 at Turnpike Cross, Somerset, on January 24 this year.

Lord Ashdown's statement was read at the inquest. Credit: Chris Ison/PA Archive/Press Association Images

An inquest was read witness statements from Paddy and Jane Ashdown, who had been travelling to their home in Norton-sub-Hamdon.

Former Liberal Democrat leader Lord Ashdown said his wife had picked him up in her silver Renault Scenic from Crewkerne Railway Station at 4.50pm.

"One mile from home I heard my wife exclaim loudly," he said in a statement.

"At the same time, there was a massive crash and a jolt to the car.

East Somerset Coroner's Court heard Mr Hurford, of Crewkerne, was more than two-and-a-half times the drink drive limit as he drove home from work at 5pm.