Loving dad took his life at his birthplace

Tribute: Bryan Isherwood's coffin was carried in a JCB to his funeral

Tribute: Bryan Isherwood's coffin was carried in a JCB to his funeral

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A gardener described as “one of life’s true gentlemen” took his own life after becoming “demoralised” at work, an inquest heard.

Bryan Isherwood, 45, of Brindle Road, Bamber Bridge, was found hanged at Radcliffe Farm, Chapel Lane, New Longton, where he was born and raised. The dad-of-three was discovered in February in the stables where he met wife Sharon, 39, in 1994.

Bryan Isherwood

Bryan Isherwood

She told Preston Coroner’s Court: “He broke his ankle at work in 2013. He started to really go downhill. They said he couldn’t do his job anymore that he had done all his life.”

She added he had felt degraded by a new role litter-picking, adding: “He was always bubbly and upbeat but he became quiet and withdrawn at times.”

She said a few days before he died he had broken down in tears, adding: “I could see him physically breaking in front of me and he said: ‘It’s all too much, you’d be better off without me.’ I told him we loved him and everything would be fine.”

On the last night she saw Bryan, he lovingly carried her to bed because her back was sore. Later she heard him go out, thinking he was going to withdraw some cash.

He broke his ankle at work in 2013. He started to really go downhill. They said he couldn’t do his job anymore that he had done all his life

He was found by officers following a helicopter and dog search a day later.

Det Insp Scott Waddington told the inquest three unsent messages were found stored in his phone, intended for his wife, son and daughter, expressing his love and that he had demons he had to deal with.

Coroner Claire Hammond said it was clear he had been feeling undervalued, driven largely by his inability to do his previous occupation, and recorded he had taken his life.

Paying tribute, Sharon, said: “It’s true when they say you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone. He used to make everyone feel special in their own little way and everyone has said how caring and supportive he always was, and how dedicated he was to his family.”

After leaving school, Bryan moved to Oxfordshire to work on a racing farm, then a hunting yard, exercising and caring for the horses. He later helped on his family’s livery yard and ran a milk round, before training as a landscaper at Myerscough College.

Bryan also held construction jobs with London’s Olympic Village, as well as roles at Lancashire County Council and South Ribble Council.

At his funeral, his coffin was transported to St Aidan’s Church in Bamber Bridge in the bucket of a JCB.

Mr Isherwood leaves daughter Hayley, 18, son Chris, 16, and daughter Laura, 25, from a previous relationship.