A YOUNG motorist from the Tyne Valley has appeared in court, accused of causing the death of a D-Day veteran and a 96-year-old woman by driving without due care and attention.

Jamie Lawson (20), of The Showfield, Haydon Bridge, appeared at South East Northumberland Magistrates’ Court on Monday after being charged with two counts of causing death through his driving.

It is alleged that, on October 4, Lawson was responsible for a crash on the A697 at Wandysteads, near Edlingham, which resulted in the death of D-Day veteran James Johnston (96), of Amble, and 96-year-old Pearl Smith, of Wooler.

Mr Johnston was a D-Day veteran who served as a pathfinder for the Normandy landings on June 6, 1944.

Both victims were passengers in a blue Dacia Duster car which was said to have been in a collision with a grey Wall Steed pick-up truck at around 3pm.

The A697 was closed in both directions for several hours following the crash, with police, fire crews and a specialist rescue unit caused to the scene.

No plea was entered at this week’s hearing and the case was sent to Newcastle Crown Court on January 7. Lawson was remanded on unconditional bail until the next hearing.