GRIEVING relatives have paid tribute to a ‘family man’ who was killed in a motorcycle accident.
Brian Fairburn, 62, of Ing Head, Slaithwaite, died when his Honda motorbike collided with a Ford Connect van on Saturday morning.
The father-of-two was pronounced dead at the scene following the crash on the A57 Snake Pass.
The tragedy happened as both vehicles were travelling east towards Sheffield at around 11am, near to Ladybower Reservoir in the Peak District.
Yorkshire Air Ambulance was among the emergency services called to the scene.
A section of road between the reservoir and the Royal Oak in Glossop remained closed for five hours.
Yesterday Mr Fairburn’s widow Jean Fairburn and children Paul and Nicola, 35 and 37, paid tribute to a ‘bike mad’ grandfather who ‘always put his family first’.
Mr Fairburn, who had four grandchildren, was an avid motorcyclist who rode his first motorbike aged 16.
He, son Paul and family friends would spend regular weekends riding together.
The family would often attend top motorcycle competitions including Moto GP races at Donington Park and the Isle of Man TT races.
Mr Fairburn also worked part-time as an advanced motorcycle instructor where he met regular riding partners Nigel and Heather Barraclough, of Bradley.
After leaving Salendine Nook High School, Mr Fairburn trained as an apprentice engineer at Brook Motors (now Brook Crompton), St Thomas’ Road.
He became an apprentice instructor and assistant manager and worked 40 years for the company.
After he was made redundant he took a job as a craft, design and technology technician at Bradford Girls Grammar School.
Paul, from Salendine Nook, said: “Any bit of good weather and we would go out together riding.
“But it wasn’t his bike first. It was family first and bike second.
“I don’t think anyone had a bad word to say about him.
“He was always there when you needed him.”
Daughter Nicola Cable, 37, of Birchencliffe, added: “He could do or make anything. He’d make various things for the children, jigsaws, even a wooden toy bike to ride on.
“He was great with the grandchildren. He would do anything for them. He would even give up going biking for his grandchildren
“He will be greatly missed at the school for his ideas and enthusiasm.”
Mr Fairburn’s funeral will take place at Huddersfield Crematorium on November 11 at 11.30am.
Donations should be made in lieu to the Yorkshire Air Ambulance.
A van driver involved in the crash has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.
He has been released on bail until February pending further enquiries.
Anyone with information about the collision is urged to call the witness appeal line on (01773) 572929.