Newlyweds killed in Nepal motorbike crash

NEWLYWEDS: Chris Bishop and Carol Davidson.
NEWLYWEDS: Chris Bishop and Carol Davidson.

Two New Zealanders killed in a Nepal motorcycling accident married only two months ago.

Wellingtonians Carol Louise Davidson, 63, and Christopher Mark Bishop, 58, were killed instantly when they lost control of their motorbike on Thursday morning (local time) at Ranibhanjyang in Makawanpur district along the Tribhuvwan Highway.

Bishop, an avid motorcyclist who had ridden all over the world, has two adult children.

They had been heading to Simbhanjyang, a tourism destination, from Hetauda when the crash happened, about 100km from the capital Kathmandu.

Long-time friend Rod Bryant said Davidson was a true Wellingtonian and had a passion for arts, culture and music in the city. He first met her on the 1960s local music scene and their friendship grew from there.

"She grew up in Lyall Bay. Her father was an early figure in the film industry and she spent quite a bit of time involved in the film and arts festival.

CHRIS BISHOP: An avid motorcyclist who had ridden all over the world.
CHRIS BISHOP: An avid motorcyclist who had ridden all over the world.

"She was energetic, full of life, optimistic and exceedingly friendly with a wide set of acquaintances. She was very much a Wellingtonian."

Davidson worked at Radio New Zealand as a production secretary and was an administrator for the Arts Festival before that.

Though she had been overseas a few times, Bryant said her true love was the capital and she spent a lot of time in Wellington. He had last seen her a few weeks ago as she headed off on her honeymoon to wish her luck.

Motorad owner and friend Brendan Keogh knew Bishop through their mutual love of motorcycles and said he loved the region which he died in.

"I met him through motorcycling when we were teenagers and if there was a ride going on we would meet up. He was very interesting and very fun. He was always enjoying his life. He loved that region and has been there frequently for long periods of time. He thoroughly enjoyed that adventure and that lifestyle."

Keogh had last seen Bishop a few months ago and had met his new wife a few times too. "He was definitely an individual. He loved that simple way of life, that's why he loved India."

TSS Red Baron parts manager Andrew Lawrence had been good friends with Bishop since the 1970s and remembers him seeking out sponsorship from outside the world of motorcycles - which was a strange thing to do at a time.

One day Bishop turned up to the track with brown leathers on and a Moro Bar logo on his side. "He really did look like a Moro Bar when he stood with his legs together. He had the nickname 'Chris Biff it' because sometimes his abilities exceeded his talent.

"He was a competitor at the front of the field but if anything crazy was going to happen, Chris was always in the middle of it."

Lawrence described Bishop as a "very quietly spoken studious fellow but a complete hang man on a motorbike - and that was the side of him that saw him in Nepal."

Before his death Bishop had been a self-employed garden landscaper. He had walked away from the professional life in the 1990s though he had been proud of the work he had done with the transport agency. "He decided that it wasn't for him and did odd jobs for a while".

Outside of motorcycles, Bishop enjoyed outdoors activities with his son and the two would often be off on a tramping adventure around the Wellington region.

Lawrence did not know Davidson well, but said once Bishop met her, "he just blossomed".

His self-esteem and confidence grew massively, Lawrence said.

Bishop's love for Nepal and India was well known among his friends and Lawrence said he used trips there as an antidote to stress.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirmed the deaths of two New Zealanders in an accident in Nepal.

"The Ministry is currently providing consular assistance to the families."

Stuff