Woman, 81, dies after being hit by Duchess of Edinburgh’s police escort

FILE - Sophie, Duchess of Edinburgh, said she was "deeply saddened" over the death of an 81-year-old woman who died two weeks after being hit by the Duchess' police escort in London. Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

A U.K. woman has died two weeks after she was struck by a police motorcycle escorting Sophie, Duchess of Edinburgh, through London.

Helen Holland, 81, was hit by the royal escort at the intersection of West Cromwell and Warwick Roads in Earl’s Court, West London on May 10, according to a report by the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

She sustained serious injuries and was treated by paramedics at the scene of the incident. Holland was taken to hospital in critical but stable condition.

Holland’s family told the BBC that the Essex native fought for her life more than two weeks “but irreversible damage to her brain finally ended the battle.”

Holland’s son, Martin, said his mother sustained “multiple broken bones and massive internal injuries” as a result of the collision. He said Holland had been using a safe pedestrian crosswalk when she was struck, according to People Magazine.

Story continues below advertisement

Buckingham Palace said the Duchess of Edinburgh is “deeply saddened” by news of Holland’s death.

Breaking news from Canada and around the world sent to your email, as it happens.

“Her Royal Highness’s deepest condolences and sympathies go to all of Ms. Holland’s family,” the statement read.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct, a police watchdog group, is still investigating the incident. The office has already interviewed witnesses to the collision and has obtained CCTV footage from nearby properties.

“Our thoughts are with the woman, who has sustained life-threatening injuries, and her family,” said IOPC regional director Amanda Rowe. “We have been in touch with them to explain our role and will keep them regularly updated as the investigation progresses.”

Rowe asked for anyone who witnessed the collision or had footage of the crash to come forward “to help us establish the full circumstances.”

At the time of her death, Holland was reportedly in London to visit her sister. She was a mother of four children, grandmother of 10 and great-grandmother of seven.

Sophie became the Duchess of Edinburgh in March after her husband Prince Edward, the youngest child of the late Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, was granted the Duke of Edinburgh title. The BBC reported the Duchess of Edinburgh is expected to contact Holland’s family privately.


Sponsored content