Personal message from acquaintance of Audrey Fyfe and George Dalgity
I have written to the Rt. Hon the Lord Advocate, Frank Mulholland, to ask that he consider appealing what I feel is the lenient sentence handed down to Gary McCourt. I knew both Audrey Fyfe and George Dalgity. In 1985, I was general practitioner to the Dalgity family, and I witnessed at first hand the effect George’s death had on them. They were quite literally devastated, totally bewildered and absolutely bereft.
I have since retired and after my retirement I met Audrey at the Fountain Spa Health Club where we were both members. I got to know her love of cycling and in that respect she put me to shame, as she undertook, even in her seventies, much longer journeys and tours than I would contemplate. That she was not wearing a helmet is irrelevant. The issue here is that Mr. McCourt has caused a second death through his driving. I think Mr. Fyfe is right when he calls for a lifetime driving ban for Mr. McCourt. I don’t know if a further custodial sentence is indicated.
I think it behoves us to make our feelings known. I do feel strongly given the damage done to the Dalgity family, and the senseless death of Audrey Fyfe. The leniency of the sentence given to Gary McCourt sends out the wrong message to other road users and as a consequence does nothing to protect cyclists. I am a regular cyclist myself and have been since the age of ten. My current bike is now well over forty years old, and I use it in practice to commute and to visit.
I am aware of the risks of cycling. I am also aware about the ongoing debate about helmet use. The wearing of a helmet is a personal choice. What is more important is cycling itself and the benefits it brings, and as cyclists we should expect to ride safely without worrying about collisions, helmet or not!
Please write to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in support of the appeal against the lenient sentence of Gary McCourt. CTC has prepared a draft letter which should take no more than a couple of minutes to complete.
Since the campaign launched over 5,000 letters have been sent to the Lord Advocate. CTC has spoken with the officials in the Crown Office to inform them of the volume of emails.