Woman, 40, took her own life

editorial image

A WOMAN who took her own life had suffered from mental problems for a number of years, an inquest heard.

However, the tragic death of Jo Rainford came as a shock to her family after the 40-year-old had not long since been announcing plans for the future.

Mrs Rainford, who had been separated from her husband for some time, was found hanged in a field off Millers Lane in Atherton on Tuesday, October 9 last year. Police and paramedics attended and she was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Bolton hearing was told that a day earlier, the Leigh mother-of-two had told family she believed her treatment was coming to an end. During the police inquiries which followed, a number of documents were recovered.

According to DC Graham Ellis from Wigan CID, these documents “indicated the intention to end her life.”

None of these documents could be related to the incident through as they were all dated earlier.

Coroner Jennifer Leeming praised Mrs Rainford’s mother, Frances Lynch, after saying it was she who helped “save” her daughter on a number of occasions.

The inquest heard that Mrs Rainford had been a mental health patient in Leigh for several years. Mrs Lynch, who gave evidence, said that her daughter seemed fine when she spoke to her the day before her death but had later told her she believed her treatment was being stopped.

Mrs Lynch said: “She said her care had finished. She had been informed before that it was going to cease but slowly.

“She rang me back straight back to tell me it was stopping.”

Mrs Lynch said before this, her daughter had begun to make certain advancements though.

She added: “On the Friday before this happened, we had a fantastic day together. She was really good and had started to make plans for the future for the first time in a long time.”

Consultant psychiatrist Dr Ali Akhtar Malik, who last saw Mrs Rainford in June last year, disputed claims that her services were stopped, adding that she had another appointment scheduled for December.

He said: “We were preparing Jo for discharge since November 2011.

“She still had an appointment with me and there was an agreement that in a crisis, she was free to telephone us and her call would be taken by a duty officer.

“I don’t think a restriction in services played a big part in what happened.”

Another problem Mrs Rainford faced was the limited number of voluntary services at her disposal, with many struggling due to lack of funding.

Mrs Lynch added that up until last year, it was difficult arranging to see her daughter but she was more free leading up to her death.

Consultant histopathologist Dr Twesha Wahie confirmed that Mrs Rainford died as a result of hanging.

Coroner Mrs Leeming said: “I accept that Jo took her own life, however I think it’s right to add that she did so whilst her mind was disturbed.

“While Jo understood what she was doing, it would not have happened had she not been unwell.”