Mum-of-two mowed down and killed while taking picture of I'm a Celeb castle as family say 'curiosity' cost her life

A MUM-OF-TWO was mowed down and killed while taking picture of I'm a Celeb castle as her family today said "curiosity" took her life.

Sharn Iona Hughes, 58, travelled ten miles from her home to Gwrych Castle in North Wales to see the lights for the TV show.

But she died after being hit by a Volvo on the road outside the castle on Saturday night as the celebs were inside the walls.

And in a heart-wrenching tribute released today, her family said: “Her curiosity led to her wanting to see the lights at Gwrych Castle which unfortunately led to her untimely tragic death along a very busy road.

"We are truly heartbroken. She was hoping to take a photo and send it to a friend. We know that several others will have done and plan to do the same.

"We urge people to take so much care and remember it is a busy main A class road.”

Fans have regularly been gathering at the spot – and the speed limit has been cut from 60mph to 30 mph since the tragedy.

Charity volunteer Sharn, of Prestatyn, was pronounced dead after being struck by a blue Volvo estate car on the A547 Abergele Road at a location known as Middle Gate at around 5pm on Saturday.

Her family confirmed she was "attempting to see the lights at Gwrych Castle."


Sharn was "devoted" to husband Elfyn and "loving mother" to children Arron and Annah.

The family said: “Her family and friends are in total shock and perplexed by her tragic death and wish to say the following about their loss.

“Sharn was so selfless, and had such a joyous, charitable attitude to life.

"She was in the process of organising deliveries of hampers to the local food bank through the Women’s Institute. We’ll miss her kindness forever.

A long-time family friend said: “Sharn was a beacon of light, her bubbly presence will not only be missed by us – her family – but also her colleagues, many friends and by the organisations to which she so generously gave her time, including Gallt Melyd Church, Gwaenysgor Choir, Trelawnyd Women’s Institute and the event’s coordinator Dyserth Women’s Institute. For whom she was pivotal in organising educational, culture and charitable events”

A member of the WI added: “She was very active in the community, she was very generous with her time, and just generous in total.

"She put other people first and was a born organiser.

"She belonged to two WI’s, was treasurer of Gallt Melyd Church, helping to organise collections for food banks and recently very proudly finished the couch to 5K.”

North Wales Police are appealing for witnesses or to anybody with dashcam footage to come forward.

Sergeant Raymond Williams from the Roads Policing Unit said: “Our thoughts remain with Sharn’s family and friends at this incredibly difficult time. She was clearly a much loved woman and her family are now being supported by a family liaison officer.

“We continue to appeal to anybody who may have witnessed the collision and who is yet to come forward, or to anybody who may have been travelling along the A547 just prior to the collision and who may have dash cam to contact us immediately.”

Since the tragedy, the single carriageway road's 60mph speed limit has been reduced to 30mph and a layby has been cordoned off with traffic cones.

A Conwy Council spokeswoman said: "Our thoughts are with the family and friends of those involved.

"The circumstances surrounding the incident are currently being investigated by North Wales Police.

The coroner has been informed.

However, despite the family of Sharn urging caution, another horrific smash unfolded on the same stretch of road barely 48 hours afterwards.

A couple driving past the castle needed medical treatment after losing control of their red Citroen Saxo just metres from the scene of Saturday night’s fatality.

Their car careered across a roundabout and smashed into a road sign on the opposite side of the busy A road and were treated by paramedics at the scene.

A North Wales Police spokesperson said: “We received a report at 1.30pm today of a single vehicle RTC near Gwrych Medical Centre on the A547 in Abergele. Minor injuries were suffered and the road was reopened at 2.33pm.”

What is Gwyrch Castle?

THE 19th-century country house is located near Abergele in Conwy, County Borough, North Wales.

Gwrych Castle was built between 1810 and 1825 by Lloyd Hesketh Bamford-Hesketh.

The castle played an important tole in World War II, as the Government used it to house 200 Jewish refugees.

It also served as the training grounds for English World Middleweight boxing champion Randolph Turpin in the early 1950s.

Gwrych Castle became known as "The Showpiece of Wales" and over the years has attracted many visitors.

The ruins are said to be haunted by the ghost of the previous owner, the Countess of Dundonald.

The Woman in White, as the locals know her as, is said to be angry that her husband stripped the castle of her valuables and sold them.

ITV bosses swapped the Australian jungle for 200-year-old Gwrych Castle due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The castle is nestled in a tree-lined hillside with 250 acres of gardens and grounds.

This year's contestants include Vernon Kay, Sir Mo Farah, Jessica Plummer, Beverley Callard and Victoria Derbyshire.

Ant and Dec are still presenting the live shows from the castle's grounds.

Anyone with information is asked to call 101 using the reference Y171230.

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