The Ladbroke Grove rail crash (also known as The Paddington rail crash) occurred on the 5th October 1999 at about 8:06am. The rail accident took the lives of 31 people. More than 520 people were injured. The accident occurred in Ladbroke Grove, London, United Kingdom and remains the worse rail accident on the Great Western Mainland.
I had been married for 2 years and a month when I received a call from my husband. He was an Inspector in the metropolitan police and was based at New Scotland Yard working in CO11 (MP The Public Order Operational Command Unit). My son was 7 years old and was recovering after having his appendix removed and had caught a gastric at the hospital. His recovery was slow. I had come so close to losing my boy.
My husband sounded rather excited. This was the second rail crash that he had been involved in, the first being the Southall Rail crash that had happened in September 1997, shortly after we had married. Little did I know, the moment the two trains collided my marriage was doomed, completely thrown off track.
Although I never met Helen Mitchell, one of the survivors of the wreckage, the impact she had on my life was phenomenal. My husband became firm friends with her. He was a family liaison officer. He worked closely with Helen and he fell in love with her way of life. Instead of spending time with me on the little time he had off, he would spend it with Helen, her partner and her friends. One friend in particular had her heart set on my husband and over the years he was drawn to her. The lady had a famous father who had died two years earlier. He was the author of Cider with Rosie.
For years I battled with life at home as he spent more and more time in Stroud, Cotswolds. His high living sent us deep into debt. And left me crashing into despair.
For seven years I battled on. Knowing that my marriage was a shared affair. The commitment had disappeared in the wreckage.
In 2007 my marriage finally came to the end of the line.