Pensioner jailed for 12 months for careless driving that killed elderly cyclist

The driver was heard ‘beeping his horn four or five times’ before he hit the e-bike rider

Police tape (Getty)

A pensioner has been jailed for 12 months after he hit and killed an elderly cyclist who was riding an e-bike.

Andrew Paul Lanham, 71, was heard beeping his horn four or five times before he struck Frank Lee with the wing mirror of his Ford Focus, a court has heard.

Mr Lee, 81, died from complications caused by his injuries six months after the incident, according to ITV Border.

Lanham, a retired tree surgeon from Penruddock, near Penrith, was jailed for 12 months at Carlisle Crown Court on Wednesday.

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Mr Lee was riding his e-bike with a Keswick-based cycling group in Cumbria on February 28 last year.

While travelling along the single-track C3031 between Matterdale and Greystoke, the driver Lanham approached from behind.

Lanham overtook two female riders, one of whom was forced to pull off the road, and was heard beeping his horn.

He drove past Mr Lee, who did not deviate from his line but was knocked from his bike as the driver passed.

Mr Lee was treated immediately by the two women he had been riding with and was taken to hospital, but died from his injuries in September last year.

He was wearing a helmet.

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Lanham had denied the charge, but was found guilty by a jury at the same court on Tuesday.

The offender said the incident was “an error of judgement” and that he thought it was safe to overtake.

Mr Lee’s 75-year-old widow Doreen said her husband was “considerate, kind, loving, optimistic and someone who had a real zest for life.

She added: “He was my soul mate.”

Lanham was also banned from driving for 18 months.

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Alex Ballinger

Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.