A PROJECT showing young people the consequences of drinking and driving using the wreckage of a Vauxhall Corsa in which a Simonstone teenager died has been commended in a major transport awards.

North West Chartered Institute of Highways and Transportation highlighted The Matthew Alston Project, set up in 2011 after the 18-year old died in a car crash the morning after drinking the night before, in their annual awards ceremony.

Matthew’s parents worked with Lancashire’s Wasted Lives young driver education programme, on a project to persuade young people not to drink and drive using the wreckage of Matthew’s car.

The teenager died after his vehicle hit a car carrying two off-duty police officers in Whalley Road, Read.

The project, launched in response to the Lancashire Telegraph’s Wasted Lives campaign to toughen young driver training, encourages young adults to examine risky driving attitudes and to show their consequences.

The former Clitheroe Grammar School pupil had been out drinking the night before, returned home in a taxi and did not realise he still had alcohol in his system when he drove to work.

County Council highways boss John Fillis said: “I'd like to pay tribute to Matthew's parents who have had the courage to take such a tragic event and use it to do so much good.”

The Matthew Alston project is delivered to schools and colleges by Lancashire County Council, Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service and Lancashire Constabulary.

The Lancashire Telegraph Wasted Lives campaign, was launched after 22-year-old Matthew Hannon’s death in 2006.

Matthew crashed his car racing through Blackburn.

The campaign calls for a graduated licence for new drivers; restrictions on them driving at night, on motorways, or over 50mph, and carrying passengers; a ban on them driving powerful cars; and disqualification of under 25s caught with drugs or alcohol in their system.