The family of a popular Newtown man who died after steering his van into an oncoming lorry on the Newtown Bypass have paid a loving tribute to him.

Marc Foulkes, a well-known carpenter in the area, was travelling in his Ford Transit van when he collided with a Volvo Globetrotter articulated lorry carrying livestock on April 25, 2021.

The 36-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene after suffering catastrophic injuries in the head-on collision.

"I don't think he knew how much he was loved," his mother Heather said following an inquest into his death at Welshpool Town Hall on Monday (September 26).

"Marc was a kind and compassionate person who always looked out for other people and had a sensitivity and awareness of when others were hurting. He always took these people under his wing and cared for them."

Senior coroner Graeme Hughes recorded the death was as a result of suicide concluding that Marc had deliberately driven across the road and into the direct path of the articulated lorry sustaining fatal injuries that were likely caused by a manoeuvre to cause his own death. He had also left two notes; one for his mother and another for his former partner.

Mr Hughes added: "Whilst it might be an impulsive act it is still an intention, an intention I find on the balance of probabilities resulting in Marc's own death. His manoeuvre that day gave every appearance that it was on purpose rather than an accident.”

The inquest heard statements from family, friends, witnesses and police officers about the 48 hours before Marc died on April 25.

Marc’s lifelong friend Tom Savage found him at the Riverside Café layby between Llanidloes and Llandinam on Sunday evening “looking like he was having a bad day”.

Marc refused to get into his van, instead leading him in a convoy towards Newtown and then the bypass. Mr Savage then attempted to get Marc into a nearby layby, but then heard a sound "like a bomb going off”.

"I realised Marc had crashed into the lorry," he said.

Michael Brett was driving along the Newtown Bypass to the abattoir near Llanidloes when he saw a white van “suddenly veered” into his lorry’s path.

“I estimate it took a second from veering to impact,” Mr Brett said in a statement.

“If I had room to manoeuvre, I would. This happened so quickly that I didn’t have time to react. There was an almighty bang.

"The airbag knocked me out of the driver’s seat. I was knocked out, but I don’t know for how long.”

The driver was taken to hospital for minor injuries after the lorry overturned, blocking the width of the bypass.

Forensic collision scene investigator Aled Thomas told the inquest that there were no brake marks found on the road from Marc’s van and there were no defects on the van.

“I am satisfied that there is more than sufficient evidence that Marc acted deliberately and alone to collide with Mr Brett," the coroner said.

Concluding the hearing, Mr Hughes said: “All of the witnesses who provided evidence of the 48 hours prior to his death made no concerns whatsoever to Marc’s physical health or wellbeing.

“I am satisfied that there is more than sufficient evidence that Marc acted deliberately and alone to collide with Mr Brett.

"The evidence of the note left by Marc to his ex-partner and his mother certainly suggest that on April 25 Marc was in a frame of mind to take his own life."