Cookstown tractor enthusiast was on way to rally when fatal collision occurred

The scene of the fatal road collision on the Cookstown to Moneymore Road dual carriageway
The scene of the fatal road collision on the Cookstown to Moneymore Road dual carriageway

The tractor enthusiast who was killed in a road crash on Friday morning was on his way to begin a vintage vehicle charity run from Moneymore to Ballyclare.

Retired businessman Victor Wylie, who was in his 60s, had been driving his tractor along the Cookstown to Moneymore dual carriageway when he was involved in a collision with a blue Honda 4x4 around 9.30am.

Vintage tractor enthusiast Victor Wylie who was killed in a collision near Cookstown on Friday

Vintage tractor enthusiast Victor Wylie who was killed in a collision near Cookstown on Friday

The male driver of the Honda was taken to hospital but his injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.

Mr Wylie was a member of the local enthusiasts’ club that had organised the two-day event – which has now been cancelled as a result of the tragedy.

In a statement, the club said: “The officers, members and friends of the Mid-Ulster Vintage Vehicles Club Ltd were shocked and saddened to hear of the tragic death of our long time member and friend, Victor Wylie.

“Victor had been a very popular and well-liked member who was a regular attendee at committee meetings, attended many of our tractor runs and provided much help in organising our annual vintage rally at Springhill. He always had a smile and a quick wit.”

The spokesman said Mr Wylie will be sadly missed, and added: “Our thoughts, prayers and sympathies are with the Wylie family at this stage and most especially his brothers Elwin, Edwin and David, all of whom are also active club members.”

Money raised from the charity event was due to go to the NI Hospice. A spokesperson for the hospice said it wished to “convey deepest sympathy” to the family and friends of “a gentleman who was offering up his time and goodwill to raise funds”.

PSNI inspector Keith Hicks has appealed for anyone who witnessed the collision to contact local police in Cookstown, or the Collision Investigation Unit in Steeple Police Station on the non-emergency number 101.

• Political figures in the Cookstown area have paid tribute to Victor Wylie as a man who will be greatly missed by both his family and the wider community.

Councillor Trevor Wilson of the UUP has offered his condolences, saying Mr Wylie was well-known and highly regarded. He added: “His loss will be a devastating blow to his family and friends. My thoughts and prayers are with them at this terrible time.”

DUP MLA Ian McCrea also knew Mr Wylie. He said: “Having known the family circle for many years, I was shocked and deeply saddened to hear the news of the tragic death of Victor in a road traffic collision. I want to assure the entire family circle of my thoughts and prayers at this time and I have no doubt that the entire community will come together to support them over the days and weeks ahead.”