Christian Chandler: Telford schoolboy's death in crash with bus ruled to be an accident

By Deborah Hardiman | Leegomery | News | Published:

A 13-year-old Telford schoolboy lost control of his bike before being struck by a bus as he rode to school, an inquest heard.

Floral tributes left at the scene

The condition of the orange bike Christian Chandler was riding may have contributed to the accident, the hearing was told.

Christian had been riding on the pavement but fell into the path of an oncoming Arriva bus in Haybridge Road, Hadley.

The accident happened at about 8am on October 16. The inquest was told he suffered multiple injuries and died shortly afterwards in hospital.

The Ercall Wood Technology College pupil’s bike was found to have been in poor condition, with issues with its chain, pedals, handlebar grips and brake.

Police closed off the road

Witnesses described how he lost control and fell into the path of the bus, despite the efforts of the driver to avoid him.

Mr John Ellery, Coroner for Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin, recorded a conclusion of accidental death. He told the hearing: “On the evidence it is clear that this was a tragic accident. Christian has lost control of his bike and fell in the path of the oncoming Arriva bus and it could not be avoided.”

He also addressed the teenager’s parents, who were present at the inquest, saying: “My condolences to your family and to Christian’s brother who witnessed what happened.”



A West Mercia Police accident investigation report stated that bus driver Suzanne Williams, 50, who had worked for the company for 17 years, had braked and 'reacted promptly' to the incident. The report also stated that bus had no defects apart from a damaged bulb which could have been caused by the collision.

Christian was a popular, funny boy who friends said showed great compassion and warmth.

After the terrible news of his death the community came together to raise thousands of pounds towards his funeral.


More than £12,000 was collected in his name, with some of that being given to the Midlands Air Ambulance charity.

Christian’s family said that it had been “breathtaking” how much had been raised.

“The little things have lifted the family,” stepfather Carl Chandler said.

“It’s good to know there’s still really nice people out there in the community and that they can come together.”

Among those who had worked hardest to support Christian’s memory was Defined Ridez, a car club which raised more than £900 with a parade of 200 vehicles through Telford. More than £900 was raised during the event.

The money went in part towards funding Christian’s funeral.

More than 100 people turned out at Christ Church, in New Church Road, Wellington, on November 7 to say their goodbyes to the teenager.

Deborah Hardiman

By Deborah Hardiman

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based out of the head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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