Cemeteries and graveyards, full of love, betrayal, tragic deaths, murder, and suicide. What will you find?

Friday 25 October 2013

Flashback Friday - Vivian Charlotte Lewis - Died In Her Racing Car

**Originally posted 2nd October 2012**

Monument to Vivian Charlotte Lewis, All Saints Churchyard, Bisham Berkshire.

"In Loving Memory of Vivian Charlotte wife of David Lewis Born 22 April 1923 - Died in her racing car at Brighton Speed Trials 14th September 1963"

Vivian Charlotte Lewis was born Vivian Charlotte Hordern on 22nd April 1923.  Search on her life has proved difficult as the spelling of her first name constantly changed throughout official records.  All that is known of Vivian's life is that she married David Lewis in 1952 in Westmister.

Sadly due to the manner of her passing, a lot is known about her death.

"London, Saturday holiday markers saw a woman racing driver killed when her car somersaulted and burst into flames at Brighton today.
The car hit a kerb, exploded and crashed into a children's playground on the promenade.
The driver Mrs Vivenne [sic] Lewis, 35 [sic] of Cookham Dean, Berkshire, was competing in the Brighton speed trials when her Jaguar hit the kerb and went out of control.
Flames shot 20ft into the air as it exploded
Two timing marshals narrowly escaped as parts of the wreckage landed a few yards from their desk. Some of the timing equipment was damaged.
Racing was stopped for 40 minutes after the crash - the first fatality in the 58 year history of the trials.
Mrs Lewis was married but had no children" - The Sydney Morning Herald 15th September 1963.


Seems Vivian was lying about her age, as she died aged 40, not 35.

On that day Vivian was racing a 1958 Tojeiro Jaguar that she shared with her husband.  The actual car that was involved in the accident was sold, restored and recently came up for sale at auction.

Vivian's car restored

1 comment:

  1. Wow, that is fascinating. Tragic, but fascinating nonetheless.


Thank you for your comment.

Ratings and Recommendations by outbrain