Great grandma who died in city crash 'stepped in path of a bus'

An elderly woman was taken to hospital after being hit by a bus on Red Lion Street

Bridget Duff was taken to hospital after the crash, where she died from her injuries - Credit: Simon Parkin

An 88-year-old woman died from head injuries after stepping out in front of a double decker bus in Norwich city centre, an inquest heard.

Bridget Duff died from a bleed on the brain on December 21 last year at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital.

At Norfolk Coroner's Court on November 18, 2021, coroner Yvonne Blake established the cause of death as an intracranial haemorrhage sustained during the accident, with coronary heart disease as a contributing factor.

Seven days earlier, Mrs Duff had been hit by a First Bus in Red Lion Street as its driver turned the corner from Rampant Horse Street.

She had been crossing the road with the aid of a walking stick from Debenhams to Bella Italia.

Police at the scene of a crash on Red Lion Street in Norwich

Bridget Duff was taken to hospital after the crash, where she died from her injuries - Credit: Simon Parkin

Witnesses described the collision as a "bump", with the bus immediately "screeching to a halt" and Mrs Duff falling to the ground.

At the time, the road was closed for more than two hours.

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Ms Blake ruled that while it was a "horrid thing" to have happened the tragedy was an accident. 

She explained: "Mrs Duff stepped off the kerb and unfortunately straight into the pathway of a bus travelling at fast walking pace.

"She would not have been visible to the driver at first.

"Once he'd turned the corner she became visible, but it was too late."

A collision investigation found the frame of the bus door had created a "natural blind spot" for the driver, while Mrs Duff's light-coloured clothing meant she was barely visible.

Emergency services at the scene of a crash on Red Lion Street in Norwich.

Bridget Duff was taken to hospital after the crash, where she died from her injuries - Credit: Simon Parkin

Avery Duff, her son, said the family were struggling to get their heads round why six seconds wasn't enough for the driver to stop but concede Mrs Duff "seems to have stepped off the kerb in an oblivious way".

Ms Blake explained that six seconds might seem fairly long when you time it on your watch but not when turning a double-decker bus round a corner.

Mrs Duff was born in Kilkenny in Ireland in 1932.

A family notice at the time of her death said she had moved to London in 1951 where she met her husband David, before the couple took over the Ketts Hill Bakery in Norwich in 1969 — running it successfully for 21 years.

Kett's Hill Bakery in Norwich. Picture: Danielle Booden

Bridget Duff owned Ketts Hill Bakery for 21 years, which she ran with her husband - Credit: Danielle Booden

The notice said: "She leaves behind three children, eight grandchildren and six great-grandchildren, all of who she loved dearly."

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