A DAD whose wife was killed outside the I’m A Celebrity castle has revealed the last moments before the horror crash.
Husband Elfyn Hughes told how he caught the sound of a “loud metallic bang” – but had no idea it was mum-of-two Sharn Hughes, 58, being struck.
The couple had gone to see Gwyrch Castle in Wales where TV stars Ant and Dec were filming last year’s I’m a Celebrity before tragedy struck.
He said: “Her curiosity led to her wanting to see the lights at Gwrych Castle, which unfortunately led to her untimely and tragic death.”
The pair had become separated on the unlit road as he locked their car after pulling over outside the castle at Abergele on the North Wales coast.
Mr Hughes said he and his wife had been to Colwyn Bay earlier that day and “after a lovely afternoon” decided to stop on the way home to take a photo of Gwrych Castle lit up for the TV programme.
The inquest heard Mr Hughes said his wife had been “hoping to take a photo and send it to a friend”.
Mr Hughes heard the crash – but told police he was “totally unaware” that his wife of 35 years was involved.
He described hearing a loud “metallic” bang and said: “At first I thought it was bricks falling off the back of a lorry.”
The inquest heard Mr Hughes said he then began helping to direct traffic on the road.
“I presumed Sharn had already crossed the road and gone to help,” he said.
He described his wife as a “beacon of light” with a “joyous and charitable attitude to life”.
When police officers at the scene told him what had happened “the shock of the information was too much to bear”, his statement read.
He said her death came as a “total shock” to the family, including their children Arron and Annah, and described Mrs Hughes as a “beacon of light” with a “joyous and charitable attitude to life”.
Sharn, from Prestatyn, Denbighshire, died in November. The inquest in Ruthin heard she suffered “catastrophic injuries, incompatible with life”.
The driver of the Volvo estate Shaun Michael Davies told officers he had accelerated after leaving a 20mph zone – in place because of people gathering near the castle during the filming of the programme.
He was doing the speed limit of 60mph when the collision took place.
He said “by the time he saw Mrs Hughes in the headlights, it was too late to do anything”.
NO TIME TO REACT
Forensic collision investigator Simon Richards said the driver would not have had time to react and avoid dark-clothed Mrs Hughes as she came onto the carriageway.
Coroner John Gittins said Mrs Hughes “would not have known a great deal of what happened” and he hoped that would offer her family “a glimmer of comfort”.
“I can’t begin to imagine how difficult that must have been for you, Mr Hughes, at the scene,” he said.
Church treasurer Mrs Hughes had been helping prepare food hampers for a local food bank, and £5,000 had been raised for the same cause in her memory.
Mr Gittins said her family “must be incredibly proud” of her.
Coroner John Gittins added that he had contacted Conwy council and been told a temporary 30mph speed limit would be in place at
The chief executive of Conwy County Borough Council has now written to the coroner saying extra road safety measures will be put in place during this year’s filming of the reality TV show.
Conwy County Borough have revealed the change could be made permanent to prevent further accidents.
A spokesman said: “The temporary speed limit on the A547, which was installed at the request of the police following a fatal accident, will remain in place while we consider whether a permanent change is appropriate.
“Any such change would involve further consultation with the police, the public and other interested parties.”
Following the tragedy, ITV said: “Everyone at I’m A Celebrity is deeply saddened to hear of the tragic accident near Gwrych Castle and sends their thoughts and prayers to Sharn Hughes’ family and friends at this extremely difficult time.”
I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, hosted by Ant and Dec, was filmed at Gwrych Castle instead of its usual home of Australia last year due to pandemic travel restrictions and will return to North Wales for a second series later this year.
Source: The Sun