An elderly couple killed in a crash north of Christchurch on Friday have been named.

Helen Marion Ashley, 85, and her 87-year-old husband Nelson Richard Ashley died in a two-vehicle crash on Flaxton Rd, near Rangiora, about 11.20am on Friday.

Police said no further information was available while the serious crash unit investigates what they described as a "tragic incident".

The couple, who lived in Rangiora, both died from their injuries in hospital on Friday. Three other people were taken to hospital with minor injuries.

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The Ashleys had been married for 56 years and had five children.

"It's a fair old while, and to both go together like that, is quite touching," said son-in-law Brian Tucker.

A memorial service will be held at Lamb & Hayward's Rangiora Chapel on Thursday afternoon.