Horror crash case goes to court

Missed: Jade Pickering
Missed: Jade Pickering

A teenager has relived the final moments before her two friends were killed in a horror smash.

Laurie Graham was the only surviving passenger of a black Ford Focus when it crashed in September 2009, killing her school friends Jade Pickering and Tia Guye, both 16.

The 18-year-old fought back tears as she recalled how the girls, who lived in Eaves Lane and were all students at Runshaw College in Leyland, were singing, dancing and laughing in the minutes before the fatal collision on the A6 Blackrod Bypass.

She was giving evidence by video link at Bolton Crown Court as the trial got underway of the driver of the car, Jordan Clayton, 20, who is charged with two counts of death by dangerous driving.

The student, who has already pleaded guilty to the lesser offence of death by careless driving, said he had been taking the Runshaw College pupils on a surprise trip to the bowling alley in Horwich when he collided with a Mercedes coach at the junction with Station Road.

- For a full report, see this week’s Guardian