More tributes paid to death crash teacher

Howard Thornthwaite
Howard Thornthwaite

This is the first picture of Howard Thornwaite - the retired teacher killed in a crash in St Helens town centre yesterday morning.

Mr Thornwaite died when a car he was driving crashed into the railway bridge on Peasley Cross Lane, close to Saints’ Langtree Park stadium.

Tributes continued to be paid today for the 63-year-old, who had only recently retired from his post as a technician at St Cuthbert’s Catholic Community College.

St Cuthbert’s acting principal Pat Lally said: “Mr Thornthwaite worked at St Cuthbert’s for the last 10 years and will be missed by the whole community.

“Howard worked tirelessly for our school and our thoughts and prayers are with Anne, his wife, who has also been a much-valued colleague and friend.”

Emergency crews were called to Peasley Cross Lane, just a stone’s throw from the Saints stadium, at about 4.30am after his Ford Fiesta struck the railway bridge.

Mr Thornthwaite’s wife, Anne, told how her husband had only recently retired from his work as a technician at St Cuthbert’s school earlier this year.

Previously, he worked for many years as a teacher at Cowley International College.

She said: “Howard taught technology for many years in St Helens schools before taking up the post of technician at St Cuthbert’s High School. He retired earlier this year.

“Howard enjoyed supporting Liverpool St Helens at Moss Lane - where he was a fixture on the touchline.”

He was married to Anne for more than 37 years.

A long-time friend of former Saint and Liverpool St Helens chairman Ray French, Mr Thornthwaite was a long-serving committee member at the Moss Lane club.

Mr French said: “He was a hard-working person in the background at the club and hardly missed a game over the past 20 years, home and away.

“He was smashing bloke and will be missed by all who knew him. This has just come as a massive shock to everyone.”

LSH will pay tribute to Mr Thornthwaite before Saturday’s first team home game against Glossop.

Mr Thornwaite spent 26 years working at Cowley International College.

Headteacher Cameron Sheeron told the St Helens Reporter the retired technology teacher was “delightful company”.

He added: “He was a terrific member of staff and was well-respected and liked by the students and staff.

“He was committed to Cowley within the classroom and without. He had a great sense of humour and many, many students will remember him fondly as the great craftsman that he was.”

Police sealed off Peasley Cross Lane between Sherdley Road and the A58 to enable them to carry out a full investigation into the cause of the crash.

The road closure later caused rush-hour delays in the area, including along the St Helens Linkway.

Anyone with any information about the incident can call Merseyside Police on 101, or Crimestoppers, in confidence, on 0800 555 111.