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Eminent lawyer and supporter of Hamptead Theatre dies in motorway crash

PUBLISHED: 16:46 13 March 2013 | UPDATED: 14:34 14 March 2013

Michael Prior, from Church Row in Hampstead, died in a motorway car crash

Michael Prior, from Church Row in Hampstead, died in a motorway car crash

Julian Morris

A passionate supporter of Hampstead Theatre has died in a motorway crash.

Eminent lawyer Michael Prior, of Church Row, Hampstead, is believed to have had a heart attack in his Range Rover as he was driving back from his son’s home in Leicestershire on Sunday, March 3.

The car smashed into a barrier on the hard shoulder before leaving the road and hitting trees.

Mr Prior, 74, was pronounced dead at the scene and an inquest was opened and adjourned at Hertfordshire Coroner’s Court.

His son, Daniel Prior, 27, said: “He loved the theatre, but also he was a huge lover of sport, literature and history.

“So many people came up to me at the funeral on Tuesday saying, ‘He could never just be a supporter, he always wanted to participate and be involved’.”

Mr Prior moved to Hampstead from Camden Town with wife Livia almost 30 years ago and quickly became involved in community life, later becoming chairman of the Church Row Association.

The couple also became involved in the fight to secure a new home for Hampstead Theatre.

* For a full obituary, see next week’s Ham&High.

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