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Grieving partner of local man who died on an Olton Road campaigns for better safety

The grieving partner of an Acocks Green man, who lost his life in a Brook Lane smash, is campaigning to improve road safety

Tributes to Marc Walton
Tributes to Marc Walton

The grieving partner of an Acocks Green man, who lost his life in a Brook Lane smash, is campaigning to improve road safety.

Mechanic Marc Walton was returning home from a family gathering on July 29, when his car swerved, hitting a tree.

The 32-year-old’s long-term partner Rebekah Sidwell, with whom he had two children, was informed later that morning the accident had been fatal. The exact details of the crash are still unknown.

“The police came to my door at quarter to four in the morning and told me Marc had passed away,” said Rebekah, aged 33, who acts as a carer for her disabled six-year-old son Samuel. I was absolutely devastated. We have got two children together and they have lost their dad.

“They still receive weekly counselling sessions. We’re a long way off from being ok at the moment.”

The full-time mum, who said she had fallen for Marc’s great sense of humour, described him as being a “big hearted, very kind and funny person who was always helping others.”

But when the family went to leave a tribute at the roadside for their lost love one, Rebekah saw how dangerous Brook Lane, in Olton, was.

“I noticed how fast the traffic moved down the road,” she added.

“I spoke to residents who were saying they have tried to get speed restrictions in place before but they’d had no luck. We have relocated to Tyseley now but I still want to help everyone living round there. I want to help make a difference, to stop any other families going through this. I just want to help prevent another death. I’d like to think he was really proud of me to be honest.”

A coroner’s hearing into Marc’s death is due to held this summer.

Rebekah launched a petition, which gained over 1100 signatures, to introduce road safety measures to address the road’s ‘blind bend’ and speeding.

It will be presented to Solihull Council’s road chiefs by ward councillor John Windmill (Lib Dem) in July.

“It’s a question of speeding in Brook Lane,” he said. “There is currently only one hump in Brook Lane, by Kineton Green Road, but it’s quite a busy road.

“Here we have a case of a fatality. It’s a large number of roads, almost in three figures, that want humps but these cases take priority.”

Transport chair Coun Ted Richards added: “I obviously sympathise with a recent bereavement and all petitions will be considered, looked at and investigated. We look to see what we can do.”



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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