WITNESS appeals has been made following two fatal road traffic collisions this weekend.

The first was on the A59, near the Heslaker Lane turning, at Broughton.

Emergency services were called at around 9.40pm on Friday, January 24 following reports of a two vehicle collision.

The collision involved a silver Mercedes Vito van and a white Nissan Juke.

The two occupants of the Nissan Juke, a man and woman, were pronounced dead at the scene.

North Yorkshire Police said the couple were from the Barnoldswick area.

They have been named locally as Claire Lucas, a headteacher from Bradley Nursery School in Nelson, and her partner, Mark.

Sue Nike, chair of governors at Bradley Nursery School, said: “It is with the deepest sadness that we can confirm that our headteacher, Claire Lucas, and her partner, Mark, both lost their lives in a road accident on Friday.

“Claire will be greatly missed. She was such a well-loved and inspirational headteacher.

“We closed the school today (Monday) as a mark of respect for Claire, and also to help us all to try to come to terms with this.

“Our overriding priority is to provide support to pupils and colleagues, and we are working with Lancashire County Council to make sure that additional care and help is in place.

“All our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends at this very sad time.”

A woman from the Mercedes van was taken to hospital with serious injuries.

The driver of the Mercedes van was arrested and later released pending further investigation.

The road was closed for several hours.

Police are appealing for any witnesses who may have seen either of the vehicles prior to the collision, or were on the A59 at the time and may have dashcam footage, to contact them on 101 quoting reference number 12200013851.

Witnesses are also being sought following a two-vehicle crash on the A629 between Skipton and Keighley where a 19-year-old man died.

The teenager was a passenger in a Volkswagen Polo driving towards Cross Hills which was involved in a collision with a BMW X1 being driven in the opposite direction near Cononley Lane Ends shortly after 8pm on Saturday.

The driver of the Polo, also 19, was taken to Leeds General Infirmary with serious injuries. He remains in a critical condition.

A second passenger in the VW, an 18-year-old man, was taken to Airedale Hospital with what police describe as "life-changing" injuries.

The driver of the BMW, a 63-year-old man, and his two passengers – a 63-year-old woman and a girl aged seven – were taken to Airedale Hospital with minor injuries.

Firefighters from Keighley, Skipton, Ilkley and Grassington attended, together with ambulance crews and police.

Off-duty medical staff and a firefighter who had stopped at the scene managed to get one of the casualties out of the Polo and gave first aid before emergency services arrived.

Firefighters freed the two other male casualties from the vehicle.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service sent four ambulances, a clinical supervisor and hazardous area response team to the incident, and the air ambulance attended.

The road was closed for about eight hours.

Anyone with information is asked to ring 101 with incident number 1220001437.