Thursday 23 June 2011

WELL-KNOWN businessman died after an accident on the first day of his holiday on the Costa del Sol.

10:15 |

Self-employed plumbing and heating engineer Gordon Taylor, 49, of St Helen Auckland, County Durham, slipped on rain-soaked paving tiles on a night out and hit his head, an inquest heard yesterday.

The accident happened at the end of October at the gated holiday complex in Benalmadena, Malaga, Spain, where Mr Taylor was staying with his wife, Elizabeth, and her relatives.

He was found some time later lying unconscious near a gate by a fellow holidaymaker.

He was taken to Malaga Hospital, where he died after more than three weeks in a coma.

County Durham Coroner Andrew Tweddle said the post-mortem examination conducted when Mr Taylor’s body was flown back to Britain revealed that he died of head injuries. Tests showed he had a high level of alcohol in his blood.

Mrs Taylor told the hearing that she returned to the couple’s one-bed apartment after they had been out, but her husband decided to go out again.

The following morning, after finding he had not returned, she discovered from the complex reception that a man had been taken to hospital.

Mr Tweddle said there was no evidence of crime, and no jewellery or money had been taken from Mr Taylor.

There were no witnesses, so Mr Tweddle said his best guess was that Mr Taylor hit his head because he had been unsteady on his feet and had slipped on the wet tiles.

He recorded a verdict of accidental death.

Afterwards Mrs Taylor, 49, said her husband had died from a minor mishap, but that others in the hospital had survived a balcony fall and being hit by a train.

She said: “You ask yourself questions, but at the end of the day there is only him (Mr Taylor) who knows.

“We have been waiting for this inquest to get closure. We have waited six months to get it finished so we can start to grieve properly.”

Mrs Taylor said she had been surprised by how many people her husband knew, saying there had been a big turnout for his funeral.

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