A 21-year-old man was nearly three times the drink-drive limit when he fatally crashed into a lamp post, an inquest heard.

Callum Taylor was declared dead at the scene of the collision in Wilson Avenue in the early hours of June 17 last year.

There were three passengers in the car at the time of the collision, with one suffering serious injuries.

A police investigation into Callum's death found he hit 90mph in the moments leading up to the crash, and a toxicology report revealed he had 227 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood at the time of his death. The legal limit is 80.

Callum, from Sidcup, had recently graduated from university and was living in Ewhurst Road, Brighton. He was a popular figure and was spending a few weeks more in the city with housemates before returning home.

Callum Taylor, 21, died when the car he was driving crashed in Wilson Avenue, Brighton

Callum Taylor, 21, died when the car he was driving crashed in Wilson Avenue, Brighton

Shortly before 6am on June 17, the day of the fatal collision, Callum's Vauxhall Corsa pulled out in front of John Seeney as he drove to work. Mr Seeney provided evidence on the collision during an inquest into Callum's death held at Woodvale Crematorium in Brighton yesterday.

He remembered watching as the car overshot the turning slightly, encroaching on to the other side of the road before straightening up.

"He was driving exceedingly slowly at first," Mr Seeney said, "I thought he was messing around, doing it on purpose."

At one point, shortly before turning into Wilson Avenue from Warren Road, both drivers waited at a red light. When the light turned green Callum did not drive on, Mr Seeney told the inquest.

"(You could see) there were conversations being had in the car. I gave him a little beep - a tap on the horn. I could see they were having a little chat in the car so I thought he hadn't seen the lights had turned green."

Then, Mr Seeney said the car began to "accelerate rather quickly" along Wilson Avenue until it was going "flat out".

Coroner Miss Hamilton Deeley described the road as "seductive" with lengthy straights and a wide carriageway.

Callum's car pulled out of sight, but Mr Seeney soon came across a "devastating" scene near the junction with Ticehurst Road. The car had smashed into two lamp posts and come to rest on a verge by the side of the road.

Callum Taylor, 21, died when the car he was driving crashed in Wilson Avenue, Brighton

Callum Taylor, 21, died when the car he was driving crashed in Wilson Avenue, Brighton

"It was badly damaged," Mr Seeney said, describing how the roof had "caved in" and there was debris scattered across the carriageway. The driver's side appeared to have taken the brunt of the damage, he told the coroner.

Mr Seeney pulled over and went to help those inside the car. He tried to speak to the 21-year-old, but said he could tell he was dead. Hearing calls for help from others in the car, Mr Seeney opened one of the doors, which he said fell off as he did so, and was able to help people out of the vehicle.

Ambulance crews were called at 6.05am and arrived five minutes later. They quickly established Callum had suffered "injuries incompatible with life", and he was pronounced dead minutes later.

An investigation by police has since established that Callum hit 90mph while driving along Wilson Avenue, with his car being caught by four CCTV cameras in the area. The road has a 40mph limit.

No "pre-existing contaminants" such as poor weather or road conditions were found.

A series of tyre marks on the road showed that Callum had started to lose control of the car as he approached the turning where he crashed.

"They show the vehicle is starting to rotate as it's going at a speed too high to try and negotiate the bend," a representative for Sussex Police told the inquest.

"It mounted the verge, hit two lamp posts and came to rest 100 metres from the bend. There was no evidence at all of braking."

He added: "If he had been travelling within the speed limit and giving due care and attention, I believe he would have been able to negotiate that bend."

Brighton and Hove coroner Veronica Hamilton Deeley recorded the cause of death as "unsurvivable head and brain injuries due to a road traffic collision".

She also noted the "presence of alcohol at 227mg per 100ml of blood" as a contributing factor.

Callum Taylor, 21, died when the car he was driving crashed in Wilson Avenue, Brighton

Callum Taylor, 21, died when the car he was driving crashed in Wilson Avenue, Brighton

Miss Hamilton Deeley said: "This was an accidental death in a road traffic collision. I know there is nothing much that can bring you (his family) any comfort, but it is absolutely clear to me that Callum will have died immediately and won't have suffered at all.

"...From everything I have read, Callum was an amazing man with many friends and many people who loved him."

Following Callum's death, a Just Giving page was set up by his mother, Anne Taylor, in aid of homeless charity Crisis. The page has now raised more than £17,500, almost 6,000 per cent of its original target.

The fundraising page read: "He had just recently finished his degree and was enjoying the last couple of weeks with his housemates before returning home. Callum crammed a lot of fun, love and hard work into his 21 years.

"We always knew that Callum had empathy for people, but have since been told about him helping the homeless in and around Brighton, providing them with food and a listening ear. With that in mind, we, as a a family, decided to raise money for a charity that seemed the perfect fit for our beautiful son.

"Callum was on first name terms with many of the local rough sleepers and we have been told that he used to buy them a burger or give them some cash to get them through the day. Crisis seemed the perfect choice."