Tributes paid to ‘diamond’ Billy

Billy Dixon (left) on his Chopper-style bike in the run up to Colne Grand Prix in 2014. (S)
Billy Dixon (left) on his Chopper-style bike in the run up to Colne Grand Prix in 2014. (S)

Hundreds of tributes have been paid to a Colne dad who died after a cycling accident in Colne on Thursday.

The 50-year-old, named locally as Billy Dixon, died following a collision in Hill Lane in Colne.

He had a love of Chopper-style bikes and wearing clogs and his death has prompted hundreds of posts on Facebook describing him as a “top bloke”, a “wonderful man” and a “Colne character”.

Nigel Green wrote: “Tragic. Billy You Were A Diamond R.I.P Pal.”

Tony Stafford said: “Great memories of a great guy, you will be sadly missed by all. R.I.P Billy.”

Paula Gillett posted: “I’m so upset by this tragic news about lovely Billy.

“My heartfelt sympathy to his bereaved loved ones Linda, Jake and Sadie. I doubt there’ll be room for everyone wanting to pay their respects at his funeral service because he was so well loved. X”

A and B Milligan, in Plumbe Street, Burnley, posted: “The world has lost a special person.

“Rest in peace Billy - those stoves and chimneys are safe in your hands in heaven as they were always here - we will miss you at Milligans and thank you xxx.

“Spare a moment to remember Billy who has fitted so many of your stoves and fires and tended your chimneys.

“A friend to everyone and the nicest man you could ever wish to meet. He also did so much for charity. Our hearts go out to his family and friends xxx.”

Sarah Lee, from Pendle Council’s Communications Team said: “It’s been an awful shock to hear about the tragic accident in Colne last week.

“We’ve known Billy Bantam, as he preferred to be called, for many years.

“He was always willing to promote cycling events for Pendle including turning up for photographs and radio interviews, often going out of his way to help.

“From chopper races at the Colne Grand Prix, to launching the Steven Burke Cycle Track in 2014, Billy was always there for us and his enthusiasm and sense of fun was totally infectious.

“He was always game for something new, from chopper jousting to the popular chopper dashes on Colne Grand Prix night, often in fancy dress!

“He was one of the cyclists who helped to make our twilight cycling video Ride the Light Fantastic, filmed just before the Tour of Britain race in September.

“Colne has seemed a very subdued place this weekend following his death and his family and many friends are in our thoughts.

“He was, without doubt, one of the people who helped to make Colne a great town and an extra special community of interesting people.

“He was widely considered the coolest and friendliest guy in Colne and a legend in his own lifetime. Everyone knew him.

“He’ll be deeply missed but never forgotten.”

Police said‎ that approximately three people were cycling in Hill Lane at 10pm on Thursday‎ when one of the cyclists, a 19-year-old woman, fell from her bike injuring her leg.

Two men cycling behind her have then collided with each other and one of them, the 50-year-old man, fell from his bike and suffered major head injuries.

He was taken to Royal Blackburn Hospital for treatment and later transferred to Royal Preston Hospital but died on Friday.

The other man, aged 40, was uninjured while the 19-year-old woman suffered bruising to her leg.

The road was closed for two hours while accident investigators attended and police are appealing for any witnesses to the collision to come forward.

Sgt David Hurst, of Lancashire Police, said: “These are tragic circumstances and my thoughts are with this man and his family.

“We are appealing for information and would ask anyone who can help to come forward and contact police.

“If you were in the Hill Lane area and witnessed the incident please contact us.”

Anyone with information can call police on 101 quoting log reference 1637 of May 12th.