The mother of 21-year-old Miriam Briddon who died almost 10 years ago when a drink driver crashed into her car has spoken of her grief a decade on.

Ceinwen Briddon lost 21-year-old Miriam to a drink driver in a devastating crash near Aberaeron in March 2014. Following a report that over 56,000 tests conducted in a Christmas drink and drug drive Operation Limit led to 14 per cent of tests showed positive result for drink or drugs, 6,616 arrests and 1,589 individuals charged for drink and drug driving, Ceinwen is speaking out against drink and drug drivers.

She said: “Miriam was a beautiful person inside and out. She was always happy, kind and caring of others. She was a loving daughter, a close sister and a good friend to many. She had a bright future ahead of her and she looked forward to graduating within a few months.

“Through no fault of her own, Miriam was cruelly and instantly taken away from us.

“The selfishness of a drink driver devastated us as a family that night and it’s very hard to put into words how losing Miriam affected us all in the following days, weeks, months and years. Losing her like we did, had a massive impact on us and how we think and live from day to day.

“The shock, the disbelief, the pain, the anger and the heartache of losing Miriam is with us as much today as what it was when she was killed nearly 10 years ago; and it will remain with us for the rest of our lives.

“I would challenge anyone to think and answer the following; ‘How would you feel if you killed someone innocent by drink or drug driving?’ As a family, we have been given a life sentence of grief.

“Our message is simple - Never drive under the influence of drink or drugs. Get a taxi, a bus, or phone a friend, but never drive.”

As well as her mum, Miriam left behind dad Richard, sisters Katie-Ann and Lowri and twin sister Megan.

She had been due to graduate from Coleg Sir Car in Carmarthen with a first-class honours degree in textile design in 2014 when she lost her life at the hands of a drink driver on 29 March 2014 (the eve of Mothering Sunday). A 34-year-old local man collided head on with her at significant speed having lost control on a left hand bend. He had been drinking earlier that day.

He pleaded guilty to causing death by undue care whilst over the prescribed drink drive limit. He was sentenced to prison but had his sentence reduced on appeal to five years claiming it to be manifestly excessive. He received a five year driving ban to start after his release.

The Briddon family campaigned tirelessly for a change in the law due to the leniency of sentencing that was handed to the driver and to others who caused fatal collisions through drink, drug or dangerous driving. Their petition – which they took to 10 Downing Street in 2016 – gained over close to 110,000 signatures, crossing the 100,000 threshold required for the UK Government to consider a debate on the matter.

Today the sentence for the most dangerous cases of death by dangerous or drink/drug driving extended to life in prison.

Chief Constable Jo Shiner, National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead for Roads Policing, said: “Drink and drug driving is responsible for many serious and fatal collisions every year and it is completely avoidable.

“Policing has always taken a robust approach to removing drink and drug drivers from our roads and as long as people continue to undertake this dangerous behaviour, we will continue to make stopping it a core roads policing priority.

“The decision to consume alcohol or take drugs and get behind the wheel is entirely irresponsible, reckless and criminal and its impact is hugely significant on individuals, families and whole communities as we see in the tragic story of Miriam Briddon.

“I would like to thank Ceinwen for her bravery in both campaigning and continuing to tell Miriam’s story as a stark warning of the very worst that can happen at the hands of a drink driver.”