Partner of dead cyclist calls for Dunfermline to Rosyth road to be closed

Published: 20 Nov 2008 11:506 comments

"It"s not fair that the man I love has died because of this. It should be closed forever.'

THE distraught partner of the Dunfermline cyclist killed on the notorious Grange Road between the city and Rosyth has called for it to be closed down.

Luisa Palminha (33), of Buchanan Street, said it was 'not fair' that another life had been lost on the road after the death of policewoman Kirsty Allan last year.

Brian Taylor (29) was heading to work at Stephen"s bakery in Primrose Lane, Rosyth, when he was involved in a collision with a car travelling in the opposite direction, at around 1am on Saturday.

The driver of the silver Rover escaped with minor injuries but Mr Taylor was pronounced dead at the scene.

Mr Taylor had only recently started cycling to work when Stephen"s bakery in Monastery Street - a one-minute walk from the flat he shared with Luisa and her nine-year-old daughter, Vera - was replaced by the new Primrose Lane bakery.

Surrounded by friends and her daughter, she said, 'I asked him not to go down that road because it"s so dangerous, and I remember when someone told me about the policewoman who died on it last year.

'He was quite stubborn - but that"s what I liked about him.

'But something needs to be done about this road. It"s not fair that the man I love has died because of this. It should be closed forever.'

Grange Road has become notorious as an accident blackspot for both pedestrians and drivers, with around 40 accidents, including two fatalities, since 2002.

Six years ago, Fife Council considered closing the road for safety reasons but sided with public opinion to keep it open.

However, the speed limit was reduced on certain sections and a weight limit was introduced in 2005 to discourage lorries from using it.

A council poll of more than 3000 residents in 2002 showed 58 per cent were in support of a traffic ban.

However, the proposal attracted more than 60 individual objections and more than 1000 people, mainly from Rosyth, signed a petition against it.

Last year, off-duty police woman Kirsty Allan, from Rosyth, died on the road after her car overturned. Her son, who was three at the time, survived without serious injury. She was 24.

Douglas Chapman, SNP councillor for Rosyth, said this week, 'Any time you hear of an accident like this, your heart goes out to the family.

'I think there have been just too many incidents now on this road for it to be regarded as safe.

'There have been calls for the road to be closed before and perhaps it"s about time the council revisited that.

"I avoid the road myself when I can but I know many people use it as a rat run between Rosyth and Dunfermline.'

Fife Council has confirmed that £50,000 is to be spent on resurfacing work next year, on top of the £40,000 spent on 'carriageway patching' last month.

Yesterday (Wednesday), a touching floral display at the scene paid tribute to Mr Taylor, a keen fisher and X-Box 360 fanatic.

A card, from dad Raymond, read, 'Brian, thinking of you son. You will be missed. Love Dad xxx'.

Another card read, 'God bless you, Brian. I loved being your boss. It was a privilege. Goodnight Gnome. Alan', while another said, 'For Brian, you are my closest friend. For that I will protect and watch over all that was yours. Martin'.

André Sarafilovic, managing director of Stephen"s, told the Press his staff were in 'absolute shock' at the sudden death of their colleague.

He said, 'Brian had been with us for 13 years, since he left school, and had worked in many departments within the company.

'He was well known and liked by colleagues and the many people who come in and out of the bakery.

'When he cycled to work he took all necessary precautions for a cyclist and wore a high-visibility vest.

'Nothing can explain the sorrow we feel for his family and colleagues at this time.'

Luisa, who is originally from Lisbon, has stayed in Scotland for 13 years and met Brian while she worked as a cleaner at Stephen"s.

She added, 'I will miss him so much. He was a good father and was always playing with Vera.

'I will miss him joking around and how we helped each other, and will remember the times we went to Ibiza and visited my parents in Portugal.'

She extended her thanks to police and hospital staff and everyone at Stephen"s for their support, along with Mr Taylor"s family and friends.

She also commended teachers at Commercial Primary School, where her daughter is a pupil, for their support.

Police have made an appeal for witnesses to come forward.

A spokesman said, 'Investigation into the accident is still under way and any person with any knowledge of this road crash or who may have been travelling on Grange Road around 1am and saw either a cyclist or silver Rover are asked to call Fife police on 01592 251111 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.'

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