Tributes to Barnoldswick boat man killed in hit and run

TRIBUTES have been paid to the 36-year-old Barnoldswick cyclist who died following an alleged hit-and-run accident in Salterforth yesterday morning.

Tuesday, 23rd November 2010, 1:30 pm

Former West Craven High student Mr Michael Isherwood, who worked for Foulridge Canal Cruises, where he was responsible for steering and maintaining the boats, was left with serious injuries at the side of Kelbrook Road in Salterforth after being hit by a car. He was airlifted to Royal Blackburn Hospital but later died.

Police launched a manhunt and appealed for witnesses who may have seen the incident on Monday around 10-30 a.m. after receiving reports a man had been found at the side of the road next to his cycle.

The road was blocked from the roundabout in Colne Road to the junction at Earby Road, near the entrance to Silentnight House for several hours.

Mr Isherwood’s manager at Foulridge Canal Cruises, Martin Cleaver said he had lost “a good friend” and was enormously shocked at the news. He said the pair had worked together at Harry Garlick TV Services where Mr Isherwood was a trained electrician, until Mr Cleaver left to set up his canal business.

Mr Isherwood worked casually for him on the boats before joining him on a permanent basis six years ago and gaining his boat master qualifications. He was trusted with steering royal passenger Prince Charles on a canal boat tour during a visit to the area in 2008.

Mr Cleaver said Michael had been due to move into his own house this week which he had been renovating. He said Michael’s parents Ken and Ivy and brother David had been left “absolutely devastated” by the accident. He said: “It makes it worse that they don’t know whether they will get closure on it or when the body will be released.”

Mr Isherwood had spent the weekend at a caravan rally at Greenhills Camping and Caravan Park, Salterforth, with his parents and friends. He was cycling from the site to work on the canal when he was hit by a car.

Mr Cleaver said: “Michael was into riding outdoors, motorbikes and mountain bikes. He was very fit and active. He did the Great North Run and finished in under 90 minutes and placed quite highly out of all the runners.

“His death affects us all. Michael was very helpful, he would help anybody and was very well liked.”

He said coach operators who brought passengers to the canal boats had been ringing up to offer their condolences, such was his popularity.

Anyone with information should contact police on 08451 25 35 45 or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

A 46-YEAR-OLD man from Hyde in Cheshire has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving after a cyclist was knocked down yesterday. He is currently being questioned by officers at Burnley Police Station.