Badwell Ash: Football star, 19, ‘upset’ before fatal crash

A POPULAR teenage football star from Suffolk was upset before her car veered onto the wrong side of the road and smashed head on into an oncoming vehicle, an inquest has heard.

A POPULAR teenage footballer from Suffolk was upset shortly before her car veered on to the wrong side of the road and smashed head on into an oncoming vehicle, an inquest has heard.

Emma Holloway, 19, died instantly when her white Vauxhall Corsa collided with a Peugeot 407 on the A134 at Bradfield Combust on November 3 last year.

Miss Holloway, a talented football player with AFC Sudbury’s ladies’ team, was returning home to Willow Close in Badwell Ash just before 10pm after football training at the ground in Sudbury on the night of the crash.

Dr Peter Dean, Greater Suffolk coroner, told an inquest into Miss Holloway’s death in Bury St Edmunds yesterday that the star player had been upset by something earlier that evening which may have distracted her while driving.

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“There’s evidence she had been upset earlier that evening,” he said. “There had been an incident which had upset Emma and there were some text messages to that effect. There’s evidence she was still upset by that message.”

Pc Richard Godden, a collision investigator for Suffolk police, said Miss Holloway suffered a lethal brain stem injury in the accident and would have died instantly.

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She was declared dead at the scene.

A police car which happened to pass Miss Holloway’s car going in the opposite direction a few moments before the collision, had captured footage of her vehicle.

The film shows Miss Holloway’s car briefly diverting from its course on to the offside of the road before being corrected.

Dr Dean told the hearing this would suggest Miss Holloway had tried to correct the course of her car which may have triggered the circumstances which led to her death.

“She may have gone across the white lines, tried to correct it and she seems, at some point, to have gone across the white lines and into the oncoming path of the vehicle,” he said.

Details of a statement from Natalie Golding, a close friend of Miss Holloway’s and fellow player at Sudbury AFC, were read to the inquest by Dr Dean.

A former King Edward VI School student, Miss Holloway was described as a ‘‘happy, fun-loving girl’’.

The statement went on to say she was a safe driver who would never take risks and was against using mobile phones while driving.

“She was normally a safe driver but there had been something upsetting earlier on that evening which seems to have played on her mind during the course of the evening itself,” Dr Dean said.

“It does seem to be the case that there was possibly some momentary inattention which could be related to the earlier upset that led her to veer across the road.

“This clearly was a tragic accident.”

Recording a verdict of accidental death, Dr Dean offered his condolences to Miss Holloway’s family and friends who had attended the hearing.

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