‘Loving’ father died after being found at Royal British Legion in Bognor Regis

A father died after he was found at the Royal British Legion in Bognor Regis, an inquest heard.

Raymond Barclay was found in the toilets at the RBL in Hewarts Lane on December 15, last year, an inquest at Crawley Coroner’s Court heard on Tuesday (May 14).

The inquest took place at Crawley Coroner's Court on Tuesday (May 14)

The inquest took place at Crawley Coroner's Court on Tuesday (May 14)

His family said he was a loving father in the inquest, but was battling with mental health problems and self-soothed them with alcohol and drugs.

The inquest heard how ambulance crews worked on Mr Barclay, who had been found hanging, and ‘managed to bring him back’ and took him to St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester. But here, it was tragically confirmed he had an unsurvivable brain injury and he was prounounced dead.

The 38-year-old, who worked as a lift engineer, had been staying at his mother’s in Bognor, the inquest heard. He had been in hospital in Chessington, where he lived, but was discharged to his mother’s address.

The father-of-two had been suffering from anxiety and depression and had previously attempted to take his own life, the inquest heard. He suffered a breakdown in 2016, and was drinking most days at the RBL before his death.

Mr Barclay always liked a drink and a laugh and worked hard, the inquest was told, but he had ‘got himself into a mess’ owing money for cocaine and drinking a lot, his family said in the inquest.

He was admitted to a crisis team, the inquest was told, and reportedly wanted to get help, but found it difficult to do so.

A post-mortem examination was carried out and found his cause of death to be a brain injury by hanging.

A toxicology report found he had two times the drink-drive limit of alcohol in his system at the time of his death.

Assistant coroner Chris Wilkinson recorded a conclusion of suicide and said he died by hanging.

He described his death as a ‘very desperate case’ and passed on his condolences to his family.

The Samaritans are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. You can call them free any time, from any phone on 116 123 or you can email them at jo@samaritans.org.

They say: “If you need a response immediately, it’s best to call us on the phone. This number is FREE to call. You don’t have to be suicidal to call us.”