Beds, Herts & Bucks

Honda test driver inquest opens after Millbrook crash death

Image caption James Bond, Top Gear and Fifth Gear have filmed at the Millbrook complex

An inquest has opened into the death of a man who was testing a vehicle for Honda when it crashed in Bedfordshire.

David Mark Allan, 47, from Swindon, Wiltshire, suffered head injuries on the Millbrook Proving Ground, near Marston Mortaine, on Tuesday.

In a statement, Swindon-based Honda said the man was a "Honda associate" and was in the car with four colleagues.

The inquest in Bedford was adjourned to a later date.

The four other people in the car were hurt but their injuries were not life-threatening.

Police and the Health and Safety Executive are carrying out an investigation.

A Honda spokesman did not reveal the nature of the test, the type of vehicle involved or whether Honda was carrying out further vehicle tests at the site.

Honda regularly uses Millbrook, which is said to be one of Europe's leading locations for the development, test and demonstration of land vehicles including those used by the military.

It is also a regular location for television shows such as Top Gear and Fifth Gear and featured in the James Bond film, Casino Royale.

Modelled on the Milford Proving Ground, in Michigan, US, the 700-acre site was constructed in the 1960s by Vauxhall Motors.

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