A MOTORBIKE convoy led more than 150 mourners to the final resting place of a popular darts player killed when he lost control of his bike in heavy rain.
Adrian Gardner, 43, known as Aidey, who lived in a caravan in Altham, was riding his Suzuki 1200cc in heavy rain on Saturday 4 October when he lost control on a series of bends in Burnley Road, Altham, between the ambulance station and the industrial estate.
Since the tragic accident his family and friends had been out raising cash to pay for his funeral as he had no savings.
The 13-strong motorbike convoy, led by Dave Barlow, guided Aidey’s hearse from the Walton Arms pub in Altham, via the crash site on Burnley Road, to Accrington Crematorium where a humanist service was held.
Dozens of cars packed with mourners followed the hearse for people to pay their respects.
At the crash site personal messages had been left for Adrian by his best friend Ady Robinson and his young nephew Ben.
They read: "You were the bestest mate I ever had. Love you to bits. Ady R" and "Uncle Aidey you were my bestest mate. Miss you. Love from Ben."
Mourners filed into the chapel to the strains of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon. They spilled out into the crematorium grounds as Sally Penn spoke about Aidey’s life.
A Welsh flag and a floral tribute in the shape of a dart board were laid on top of his coffin.
Mourners travelled to Dill Hall Cemetery for the burial before going to the Stanley pub to celebrate his life.
Aidey, a keen karaoke singer, was born in Anglesey and moved to Accrington with his father. He worked at System Hygiene on the Altham Industrial Estate.
He was a talented darts player who had often represented Hyndburn in competitions up and down the country and competed in the Scottish Open.
Darts world championship runner-up Ronnie Baxter, formerly from Accrington, travelled up from London to say his goodbyes along with representatives from every darts team in the league.
Aidey leaves his brother Kevin and sister-in-law Carol, of Beech Grove, Accring-ton, a cousin Jacqui, of Manor Place, Church, and many nieces, nephews and godchildren.
Last Friday and Saturday his friends held darts knockout competitions in the Pioneer Club, Church, and the Forts Arms in Clayton-le-Moors to raise money for his funeral.
Best friend Ady said: "We were just hoping to be able to secure the £800 deposit for the undertaker so the funeral could go ahead. But the way things have gone we will have raised nearly the total cost of the funeral.
"The number of people taking part in the fund-raising and donating cash is a real testament to how well liked and respected Aidey was."