Family pay tribute to Wiltshire teenager who died in A420 crash

The family of a teenager who died in a crash on the A420 last weekend have described him as a “beautiful boy” who “loved life”.

Aspiring drum and bass DJ Calum Leighton, 18, died in a crash with a coach and white Alfa Romeo on Sunday morning on the A420 near Faringdon.

Two other young men, aged 18 and 20, were also pronounced dead at the scene.

Sister Darcey described Calum as the “big brother I looked up to and always will” and explained how she wanted to be “just like him”.

His family said their one comfort is that Calum, from Chippenham, enjoyed the “best ever” last 24 hours when he launched his music label Run Da Riddim. 

Family members Andy, Ursula and Darcey wrote in a tribute: “Calum loved life. And to Calum, life was his friends and his music. He always put the happiness and wellbeing of his friends first.

“He was so happy at being able to launch his own label, Run Da Riddim, with its inaugural event last Saturday, along with his friends Olly Ley (Chunk), Callum Whiting (SEF) and Sam ‘MC’ Martin.

“It had been months in the planning and was deemed an outstanding success in every way.

“Everyone said how brilliant his set was and how happy he was to be sharing his love and cheeky smile with all his friends.

“His sole aim, as always, was to bring everyone together for a good time, and what better way than with music, the Language of the World.”

Sister Darcey added: “When we were young, I would always copy everything he did, even the little things, because my whole life I had the comfort of knowing Calum was always there for me and I wanted to be just like him.

“Even though he always teased me when we were young like older siblings do, play fighting, calling me names, snitching on me. But that was Calum. A goofy but deep down caring boy.

“As we got older and he matured, he would correct my mistakes, give me advice on things that were big to me at the time, but little to him because he knew there are better things to do in life than waste your time being upset or stressed.

“He did not care what anyone thought. If he wants to do something, he will do it, that’s how passionate he was. No matter what anyone says, that’s what inspires me.

“Calum would always make me laugh with his random noises or phrases he used to say and I loved that about him. We shared a good 15 and a half years together and I wish we had more.

“All my family and I can do is cherish and reflect on all those memories we shared, keep Calum with us in our hearts, and try heal and make Calum proud.”

Calum used Covid to discover his passion for music and, more particularly, drum and bass.

In the first week of lockdown, he booked his first online music production course.

While he had a place to study music performance at BIMM in Bristol, he realised he wanted to be a DJ and pursue music production.

He moved to Access Creative College after completing his first year at BIMM.

He began performing at events and clubs across Bristol and Bath, taking to the main stage and becoming a regular at Revelations.

His family added: “He always found it hard to concentrate in class at school, but three hours of music production, not a problem!”

“He was so chuffed to get a set at Lakota a few months ago, was performing monthly on digital radio at Goat Shed and had played at one of the first ever drum and bass events at The Fleece with The Dub Dealerz.”

Calum then started producing his own music. Friends Chunk, SEF and MC Martin plan to finish and release all of his songs over the next few months.

His family say they only realised how many songs Calum had been working on this week.

“We knew he was making progress in the drum and bass scene but never realised how good he had become in such a short space of time. You don’t realise what you have until it’s gone. And then it’s too late.”

Speaking about the support they’ve received, Andy, Ursula and Darcey said: “The love shown around Chippenham by the friends of all three boys has been so touching.

“We thank all of his many, many, many friends for their love and support.

“Calum will be absolutely devastated about the impact this will have on all of his friends, but especially Lawrence and Joe.

“Our hearts go out to their families and everyone else affected by this terrible accident.

“Our beautiful boy Calum, da brightest rock star in the sky will shine on in are hearts forever. Andy, Ursula & Darcey xxx.”

Police are appealing for witnesses or anyone with dash-cam footage to come forward by making a report online, or by calling 101, quoting reference 43220374478.

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