Young driver who killed Chesterfield mum-of-four “very sorry”, court hears

The family of a Chesterfield mum-of-four killed by a “weaving” driver who ploughed into her head-on at the Chatsworth Estate heard he was “very sorry” in court today.

Friday, 16th July 2021, 1:50 pm

Alexander Caldicott, 28, hit mum-of-four Tina Clifford when he veered onto the wrong side of the road at Beeley on July 26 last year.

Chesterfield Magistrates Court heard “tireless” charity campaigner Tina, 47, - a manager at the town’s Rykneld Homes - died after landing in a grass verge at the side of the road.

Harley Davidson “enthusiast” Tina was riding in “formation” with four others on motorcycles at the time - including her husband Steven Clifford - however she “bore the very brunt” of the collision.

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Chesterfield Magistrates Court

Paramedics rushed to try and save her life however prosecutor Lee Shepherd told the court today that “unfortunately nothing could be done for Mrs Clifford”.

During the hearing Caldicott’s lawyer Richard Saynor told the court his client was “very sorry” and intended to write a letter of “unreserved apology” to Mr Clifford and his family.

Mr Saynor said: “He wanted it to be known that he apologises unreservedly for the driving that caused the tragic accident that led to the death of Mrs Clifford.

“He knows nothing he says or does can bring her back but he hopes by taking full responsibility it can at least go in some way towards the difficult healing process - he is very sorry.”

Prosecutor Mr Shepherd told the court prior to the smash at about 5pm Caldicott was seen “weaving in his lane” - hitting the grass verge at one stage.

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The prosecutor said a drug swab revealed cocaine in Caldicott’s system however he was not above the prescribed limit - having taken the drug at a party the previous night.

Magistrates were told the defendant, from Matlock, was on his way home at the time - having played golf in Sheffield and having drunk one pint of lager.

Mr Shepherd said: “I cannot say how tired he was after being out with friends and playing golf all day.

“I do not exactly know what happened to Mr Caldicott - maybe he just lost concentration but what we do know is a lady out enjoying her day is no longer with us.”

Magistrates heard after the accident Caldicott stopped at the scene immediately.

Describing grandmother-of-four Tina as an “experienced” rider, Mr Shepherd added: “This is not a statistic, this is a lady out with her husband and her friends enjoying her day.”

Caldicott, of Bonsall Lane, Matlock admitted causing death by careless driving.

He will be sentenced at Derby Crown Court next month.

Paying tribute last year her family said “life-long” Chesterfield woman Tina, of Hollingwood, enjoyed “horse-riding, motorbikes, knitting, sewing, cross-stitch and walking”.

They added: “Tina leaves behind her husband Steven Clifford, children Kelly, Abbie, Lee and Dean, four grandchildren and sister Lisa.”

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