Tributes pour in for 'cherished' mum and daughter who died in horror car crash during Storm Babet

24 October 2023, 14:01 | Updated: 24 October 2023, 16:46

Cheryl Woods, 61, and Sarha Smith, 40, were travelling on the M4 in Wiltshire when the crash happened
Cheryl Woods, 61, and Sarha Smith, 40, were travelling on the M4 in Wiltshire when the crash happened. Picture: Handout
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

Tributes have been pouring in for a 'cherished' mother and daughter who were killed in a horror car crash during Storm Babet.

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Cheryl Woods, 61, and Sarha Smith, 40, were travelling on the M4 in Wiltshire during Storm Babet when the horror crash unfolded.

Four cars and a lorry were involved in the crash, with both Cherly and Sarha declared dead at the scene, while two others were injured.

A statement from their family reads: "Cheryl Woods, cherished by those in her life, fulfilled the roles of a loving mother, doting grandmother, cherished sister, and a dear friend.

"Her selflessness was a defining trait, consistently prioritising her family's well-being over her own, and she took immense pride in her Welsh heritage while nurturing a deep love for nature."

Paying tribute to mum-of-six Sarha Smith, her family went on: "Sarha Smith, in the footsteps of her mother, unselfishly devoted herself to her family's needs ahead of her own.

"She was not only a mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend, but her absence leaves a void for those who relied on her radiant presence.

"Her legacy lives on through her six daughters, who will forever hold her memory close and strive to honour her with their efforts."

Storm Babet wreaked havoc across the UK last week
Storm Babet wreaked havoc across the UK last week. Picture: Getty

The car crash took place just after 9am on Friday on the eastbound carriageway between junction 17 at Chippenham and junction 18 at Bath on the M4.

So far, seven people are confirmed to have been killed in Storm Babet.

On Monday, Police Scotland confirmed that the body of Peter Pelling, who was reported missing on Friday, had been found in a vehicle.

A family statement read: "Peter was a very kind, loyal and hardworking man. He was a much-loved son, brother, uncle, partner and friend. Our family are absolutely devastated by this horrific and tragic accident.

“We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the first responders and all of the emergency services teams involved in what was a particularly challenging rescue, due to the weather and environmental factors surrounding the incident."

Peter Pelling
Peter Pelling. Picture: Police Scotland

Read More: Body of man found in car in Aberdeenshire as Storm Babet death toll hits seven

Read More: Exact date UK to be 'covered in snow' in 'polar blast' after Storm Babet

Storm Babet brought floods and strong winds as the Met Office issued a rare red danger to life warning that was in place in Scotland.

Hundreds were evacuated from their homes in Brechin, Scotland, as Storm Babet roared in last week.

Wendy Taylor, 57, also died when she fell into the Water of Lee near Brechin in Angus, north-east Scotland on Thursday afternoon.

Ms Taylor fell into the river at about 1.45pm on Thursday, and her body was recovered at about 4pm.

Disruption from Storm Babet has lasted into this week
Disruption from Storm Babet has lasted into this week. Picture: Getty

Other deaths linked to the weather included housebound Maureen Glibert, 83, who was found dead at her home in Chesterfield, Derbyshire on Saturday after Storm Babet flooded the area.

Elsewhere, a 56-year-old man who was killed when a tree fell near Forfar on Thursday.

A man in his 60s was swept away by floods in Shropshire on Friday, and late that day a 19-year-old man was killed in a crash in Halifax.

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