Soldier killed himself after lockdown 'took everything from him', inquest hears

Max Stephens
·2-min read
Lockdown
Lockdown

A former soldier with no history of mental illness killed himself after lockdown “took everything from him”, an inquest heard.

Sean Bradley died by suicide on July 7 last year after becoming increasingly distressed that his business would fail because of a lack of financial support from the government, his sister told an inquest.

After the hearing his sister, Angela Wray, said: "People need to realise just how many this pandemic has affected."

Neighbours discovered the 53-year-old’s body with "catastrophic injuries" after hearing a loud noise at his home in Church, Accrington.

Mr Bradley's medical records showed no evidence of self-harm, depression, anxiety or mental health issues, the inquest at Accrington Town Hall heard.

Ms Wray, said her brother felt frustrated by the lack of Government support for businesses such as his and more understanding was needed.

Mr Bradley, born in Bury, Greater Manchester, had served "with distinction" in the King's Hussars and the Royal Armoured Corps before studying with the Open University and becoming an IT consultant with blue-chip companies.

Described as "a lad's lad" who also enjoyed camping and shooting, he missed his outdoor lifestyle and gave up his IT career to go travelling around the world for six years.

Mr Bradley, who was not married and had no children, then studied the martial art form Krav Maga in Israel and returned to the UK to set up his own club in the north west of England.

But it all went "out of the window" when the UK went into lockdown last March, the inquest heard.

James Newman, area coroner for Lancashire and Blackburn with Darwen said: "He can't go out, he can't do the things he loved, he can't do his job. It's all taken away from him.

"It seems the effects of lockdown, certainly financially - Tony was a martial arts instructor training a lot of people, it was his life, his profession and that went out of the window in lockdown.

"He had built up and started a business that had taken time to develop and grow and all of a sudden, as a new business, he didn't have any funding from the pandemic.”

The coroner recorded a verdict of suicide, after Mr Bradley's "business and lifestyle was severely curtailed by the restrictions due to the Covid 19 pandemic".