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‘Tragic’ end to Bakewell mum’s life

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A Bakewell mother hanged herself because she thought everyone would be better off without her, an inquest heard.

Rebecca Swindell, an engineer, was found in the barn at the farm where she lived, in Alport, by her husband Thomas, on April 26.

He said he had no idea she was depressed.

On the day of her death, they awoke at 6.30am and he left the house to work on the farm. Mr Swindell returned at lunch to find a note to say she’d gone for a walk.

He went to look for his wife and found her in an outbuilding, they called the loft.

The widower said: “There was no indication she was going to do anything like this before it happened.”

Paramedic Yasmin Beasley said when she arrived at the scene, Mrs Swindell had been dead for hours. She added that Mr Swindell was traumatised and kept saying: “Rebecca why have you done this? We could have sorted things out.”

Five notes were found around her, a letter for her husband, daughter Emma and son David, and two documents with instructions about her finances.

The court heard that in the letters, the deceased wrote that she thought “people would be better off if she wasn’t around”.

A red notebook was also recovered from a drawer in her bedroom, containing drafts of the letters.

Best friend Linda Robinson said: “She was very intelligent and seemed to cope with any situation. I noticed a change a year ago. Before she was talkative and whatever, then she became quiet. In October, we talked about her marriage. Things weren’t working out. She was concerned about doing the best for the children and Mark. She seemed down.”

At a hearing in Chesterfield last Wednesday, assistant coroner Sophie Cartwright ruled that the cause of death was asphyxiation by hanging and recorded a suicide conclusion.

She described the death as “particularly sad and tragic”, adding: “The content of those letters gives the impression of a lovely, caring woman, and I can only imagine the pain and agony the family are going through, having lost their daughter, sister, wife and mother.”

 

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