Gloucestershire

Cotswolds pilot nose-dived glider in suicide crash

Scene of glider crash
Image caption The crash happened on 14 June at Aston Down Airfield near Stroud

A depressed pilot deliberately nose-dived his glider into the ground at a Cotswolds airfield, an inquest heard.

Michael England, 57, from Cheltenham, who was originally from New Zealand, died on 14 June at Aston Down Airfield near Stroud.

Gloucester Coroners' Court heard he had suffered from depression and left a letter at home saying: "Like my father, I am now writing a suicide note".

Coroner Katy Skerrett recorded a verdict of suicide.

The court heard Mr England, of School Road, Charlton Kings, was a relatively experienced pilot and was a member of the Cotswold Gliding Club.

He took to the skies in a club glider and circled the airfield seven or eight times before the crash.

He deliberately made a near-vertical dive at high speed onto an old hangar next to the airfield, and died from multiple injuries, the court was told.

Mr England had previously attempted suicide in 2006.

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