Family pay tribute to 25-year-old killed at level crossing

Rory Minns
Rory Minns

THE family of a popular young man who died on New Year’s Eve has thanked the community for rallying round them in their time of need.

Rory Minns, from Tangmere, was 25 when he was struck by a train at Woodhorn Lane level crossing in Oving on December 31, 2014.

At an inquest into Rory’s death in Chichester on Tuesday (July 7), coroner Penelope Schofield concluded Rory had taken his own life. She also praised his family for the ‘dignity they had shown’.

Born on September 27, 1989 at St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester, Rory was one of six siblings and attended Chichester High School for Boys before going on to study horticulture at Brinsbury College.

He then began a career as a gardener.

His family said he ‘got on with everyone’.

In a statement read at his inquest, they said Rory had a number of interests and hobbies including in-line skating, walking in the countryside, cycling and running.

He also enjoyed going out with his friends and reading books on horticulture.

“He was a very happy go lucky guy. He was friendly and would make time to talk to everybody.”

Rory’s brother, John, said: “On December 31 my sister phoned with the devastating news that Rory had died on the railway.”

Speaking after the inquest, Rory’s family said they wished to thank members of the community for the support they had given them.

A bench is due to be unveiled in Rory’s memory in the Tangmere Community Garden in September thanks to donations and funds raised by people across the area.

The family also wants to thank everybody who has posted comments on Rory’s memorial Facebook page.

Some 200 people have already posted tributes to Rory on the site, with many sharing their memories and photos with the much-loved young man.

His family said the page was ‘for everyone who knew him, to remember the many happy times, and the free spirit he was’.

At his funeral in January this year, so many people turned up that not everyone could fit into the visitor centre at West Dean Gardens.

Help is available for people going through tough times or experiencing suicidal thoughts via the Samaritans. Call 08457 909090 or visit

Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.

Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.

1) Make our website your homepage at

2) Like our Facebook page at

3) Follow us on Twitter @Chiobserver

4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.

And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!

The Chichester Observer - always the first with your local news.

Be part of it.