Body found in Wigan canal just months after tragic deaths of two men in same area

A man's body has been pulled out of the canal in Wigan.

Thursday, 4th March 2021, 4:42 pm

Emergency services were called to the Leeds-Liverpool Canal near Leigh Street on Monday afternoon when the body of the 47-year-old man was found.

He has not yet been formally named, but police say there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death.

A police spokesman said: "At around 4.45pm on Monday, officers were called to a report of a body found in the canal near Leigh Street, Wigan.

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The body was found in a stretch of the canal near Leigh Street in Wigan

"Emergency services attended and sadly the man was pronounced dead at the scene.

"There are believed to be no suspicious circumstances and report is being prepared for the coroner."

It is the third time a man has died in that area of the canal in just a few months.

Michael Greenall, known to his loved ones as Mikey, drowned in the Leeds-Liverpool canal near lock 77 at Rose Bridge after a night out with friends in September.The 27-year-old became “incapacitated, confused, and disoriented” after drinking around seven pints and taking diazepam tablets – which he was using to treat sleeping problems – before falling into the water while making his way to a friend’s house.

That was less than a month after the death of 22-year-old Matthew Dutton, whose body was found just yards away in late August. Mr Dutton had also been out drinking with friends and had taken ketamine before making his way down the canalside and falling in.

Inquests concerning the deaths of the two men were recently held at Bolton Coroner's Court, both led by coroner Timothy Brennand.

At Mr Greenall's inquest, Mr Brennand said: "It is quite plain to me that this is a case that has a resonance with a second case that this court has dealt with.

“Before me on February 2, 2021, I conducted an inquest touching the death of Matthew John Dutton.

“In relation to Mr Dutton’s death, he was recovered by an underwater search team at lock 79 of the Leeds-Liverpool Canal in Rose Bridge, in Ince.”

The coroner went on: “What I can do... is to write to the Canal and River Trust and Wigan Council to make clear that I have matters of concern in relation to the issue of the fact that within the period of canal between lock 77 and lock 79, this is the second tragedy to have befallen local residents in that area.

“Open stretches of water can kill.”

Mr Brennand added: “I will write with immediate effect to the two agencies that I have indicated, the council and the canals trust, and express my own concerns in relation to the issue of water safety and will ask for a response within three months, so that I can understand exactly has happened and what has come of the inter-agency approach.”

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