A MOTORCYCLIST killed in a crash near Winchester has been named as top engineer Steven Rayner.

He died as a result of the collision on the eastbound A31 dual carriageway, between Winchester and Alresford, on Wednesday.

Mr Rayner 53, of Northwood Park, Sparsholt, was a highly successful civil engineer who had risen to the top of his profession since graduating from Southampton University in 1988 with a degree in civil engineering.

He worked on projects in the Middle East, Malaysia and Hong Kong and in 2012 was appointed director of Winchester consulting engineers Upton McGougan, 20 years after he had joined the firm as a young graduate.

In December 2016 he was appointed a director of WSP consultants.

Richard Hand, director of Ridge, which acquired Upton McGougan in 2014, said: “The whole team at Ridge were shocked and saddened to hear of Steve’s untimely death. Steve was a very capable and experienced engineer, with a broad international pedigree; many of the buildings and complex structures that he worked on will bear testimony to his talents for many years to come”.

A WSP spokesman said: “Steve was a much valued colleague. This is devastating news and our thoughts are with his family.”

Steve Miles, who worked with Mr Rayner at Upton McGougan said: "Steve was a very talented structural engineer who was highly regarded by both his colleagues and the many other professionals and contractors that we worked with down the years so his presence in the construction industry will be very sorely missed.

"My thoughts, and also those of all of our former colleagues, are with his wife Marie and his two daughters at this tragic time."

The fatal collision involved a Land Rover Discovery and Mr Rayner's motorbike.

Mr Rayner was pronounced dead at the scene.

Investigations into the exact circumstances are ongoing and the police would like to speak to anyone who may have seen the incident or either vehicle prior to what happened at around 8.40am on Wednesday.

Anyone with information is asked to contact us on 101, quoting 44180250358.