OAP drive the wrong way up A14 - court

A PENSIONER'S driving has been branded “extremely dangerous” after a shopping errand turned into a hair-raising seven-mile journey the wrong way up the A14.

A PENSIONER'S driving has been branded “extremely dangerous” after a shopping errand turned into a hair-raising seven-mile journey the wrong way up the A14.

Kathleen Daye, 80, of Church Road, Brettenham, near Sudbury, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving before Sudbury magistrates yesterday.

Mrs Daye was handed a two year conditional discharge, banned from driving for three years and instructed to take a re-test if she wants her licence back at the end of the ban.

The retired widow admitted joining the A14 at the Bury St Edmunds east slip road going east at around 11pm on April 25 but according to witnesses took a U-turn.


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Unable to find an exit, Mrs Daye travelled as far as the Haughley bends with drivers swerving to avoid her and flashing their lights before a police patrol car called to the scene by concerned motorists pulled her over.

Rachel Mahony , prosecuting, said: “Mrs Daye was travelling on the A14 on the wrong side of the carriageway for seven miles, forcing other cars to take evasive action.

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“Mrs Daye, who was of previous good character, immediately surrendered her licence to the police.”

David Stewart, mitigating, urged the magistrates to ban Mrs Day and said she had no plans to drive again.

He said: “This is a slightly unusual case. Earlier that day she had been out on an errand and had got slightly lost in Bury.

“A group of young men gave her directions but somehow (she) ended up on the wrong side of the carriageway at the Sainsbury's junction.

“She immediately surrendered her licence to police and her daughter has now taken the car.”

Sentencing, Diane Allum, chairman of the bench, said: “We find your driving on this occasion was extremely dangerous and could have led to a serious accident.

“However, we have also heard that you have a clean licence and you pleaded guilty immediately and that is why we are giving you a conditional discharge.”

In addition to the ban and retest order Mrs Day was instructed to pay £60 towards prosecution costs.

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