A FORMER health chief and company director from Caton died after falling over a cliff while out walking in Cumbria, an inquest heard.
William Bingley, 61, former chairman of NHS North Lancashire, the area’s primary care trust (PCT), was walking with his wife Helen and their long-term friend Julie Collins when he slipped from a narrow path above Rawthey Gill, near Uldale Force, Sedbergh, on July 31.
Lancaster Coroner’s Court heard that Mr Bingley, of Forge Mill, almost certainly suffered a “cardiac arrhythmia” – an irregular heartbeat – before collapsing and falling about 40ft over the edge of a sheer drop, and into a plunge pool below.
His wife said that he “made no sound” as he fell.
He was airlifted to the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, but was pronounced dead on arrival.
Mr Bingley, who was 6ft 7in and weighed 20 stone, had previously collapsed without warning several times, including at a PCT board meeting and while on holiday in Malta, and had subsequently been fitted with a “loop recorder”, which recorded irregularities in his heartbeat.
See Lancaster Guardian, December 8, for the full story