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Tributes to Des, 84, 'a very fine citizen'

By The Cornishman  |  Posted: January 03, 2013

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FRIENDS and neighbours have paid tribute to a much-loved Marazion man after a fatal crash on the A30 near Penzance.

Police and the ambulance service were called to a single-vehicle collision at Newtown roundabout, Long Rock, at 6.10pm on Friday.

Police say a silver Mazda 323 had been travelling from the roundabout towards St Erth when it left the road and went into a hedge. The driver was found unconscious and was taken to Royal Cornwall Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Police officers have informed his next of kin.

The driver has been named locally as Des Barnes, who lived next door to the Fire Engine pub in Higher Fore Street, Marazion.

It is believed the 84-year-old – a resident of the town for more than 50 years – was on the way to have dinner with a friend when he died.

The road was closed for two and a half hours while police examined the scene. Police have launched an investigation and are appealing to anyone who witnessed the collision.

They are keen to trace a cyclist who stopped at the scene but left before police arrived.

Mr Barnes, a skilled cabinet-maker, devoted the latter part of his life to caring for wife Monica, a talented local artist and former teacher in Marazion, before she died in 2008. After her death, friends say he often spent time visiting the sick in the town.

Mr Barnes leaves a daughter, Joanna, who is thought to live in Exeter.

Friend Harvey Richards, from Marazion, said: "He was a fine citizen of Marazion. He regularly visited the sick people and it will be a loss.

"He was a very skilful cabinet-maker who learned his trade in London, where he met Monica. He was a very caring man. His wife developed all sorts of problems and he fixed up the house using his skills so that she could move from room to room.

"They moved here more than 50 years ago and in about 1963, a very cold winter, they were the first people to ice skate on the pond in Marazion. We'd never seen that before and the whole of Marazion was out there watching them.

"He was a great friend. We shall miss him bitterly."

Anyone with any information about the collision is asked to contact Camborne Serious Collisions Unit on 101, quoting reference 510 of 28/12/12.

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