Around 100 mourners packed a marquee at a beer-fuelled wake last night for a father killed alongside a friend in a horror crash while being chased by police.

Scores of mourners flouted coronavirus restrictions which prevent more than 30 people attending funerals to pay tribute to Tommy Sharp, 29, who died in a collision during a high-speed police pursuit. 

Supercars including a Lamborghini and a Rolls-Royce were revved by mourners at the Salford wake, while floral tributes spelled out ‘film star’. 

A police van was stationed nearby early in the wake, but later moved away.

One eyewitness said: ‘It was quite a large event, about a hundred people. They were revving loads of supercars up and down Oldham Road.’

Sharp and his friend Paddy Connors, 36, were killed when a car they were in crashed into two other cars during a police chase. 

The police watchdog said that the Mercedes was instructed to stop by an unmarked police car after it was seen speeding through Salford.

Around 100 mourners packed a marquee at a beer-fuelled wake last night for a father killed alongside a friend in a horror crash while being chased by police

Around 100 mourners packed a marquee at a beer-fuelled wake last night for a father killed alongside a friend in a horror crash while being chased by police

Paddy Connors, left, and Tommy Sharp, right, were killed during a high-speed police chase

Paddy Connors, left, and Tommy Sharp, right, were killed during a high-speed police chase

Following the minute-long pursuit, the Mercedes collided with two Volkswagen Passats, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) added. The collision happened at around 11.40pm last Wednesday.

The driver of the first Passat escaped injury, but the driver of the second VW, a taxi, suffered minor injuries.

Two women who were passengers in the back were taken to hospital with serious injuries not thought to be life-threatening, the IOPC said.

IOPC regional director Amanda Rowe previously said: ‘My thoughts are with the men’s family and friends after this tragic incident.

‘When someone dies following police contact, it is mandatory for forces to make a referral to the IOPC. Our role is to establish the circumstances of the incident.’

In an earlier statement, Greater Manchester Police said: ‘At around 11.40pm on Wednesday, September 23, police observed a vehicle being driven at speed on Frederick Road, Salford.

‘Officers initiated a pursuit and the vehicle in question collided with two third party vehicles.

Scores of mourners flouted coronavirus restrictions to pay tribute to Tommy Sharp, 29, who died in a collision during a high-speed police pursuit

Scores of mourners flouted coronavirus restrictions to pay tribute to Tommy Sharp, 29, who died in a collision during a high-speed police pursuit

Supercars including a Lamborghini and a Rolls-Royce were revved by mourners at the Salford wake, while floral tributes spelled out 'film star'

Supercars including a Lamborghini and a Rolls-Royce were revved by mourners at the Salford wake, while floral tributes spelled out ‘film star’

‘Two men from the vehicle in question were sadly pronounced dead a short time later.

‘One man and two women from a third party vehicle were taken to hospital with serious injuries. No arrests have been made.

‘In line with normal procedure, this incident has been referred to GMP’s Professional Standards Branch and the IOPC.’

Sharp lived with his wife and young children in Salford. Nicknamed ‘Mush’, he was described by friends and family as ‘the life of the party’ and a ‘loving and caring dad, husband, brother and uncle’. 

Connors leaves behind a wife and four children, and lived in Wigan. 

Around 100 mourners packed a marquee at a beer-fuelled wake last night for a father killed alongside a friend in a horror crash while being chased by police

Around 100 mourners packed a marquee at a beer-fuelled wake last night for a father killed alongside a friend in a horror crash while being chased by police

The wake comes as Manchester was branded the UK’s coronavirus capital after its infection rate increased more than 15-fold since local lockdown was brought in.

Manchester’s 529.4 cases per 100,000 people is the highest weekly rate recorded in the pandemic.

This is higher than the 20 per 100,000 it experienced at the end of July when local lockdowns were enforced in Manchester and the surrounding areas of Salford, Bury, Trafford, Tameside and Rochdale.

But a lack of tests during the spring means it is impossible to accurately compare between now and then. It may have been considerably higher at other points in March and April.



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