A LEDBURY business owner who had a history of depression took his own life, an inquest heard.

Anthony James Sheppy, 56, was found dead on January 5 at Ledbury Van Hire Workshop, which he owned.

An inquest at Hereford Town Hall this week heard that Mr Sheppy’s father, Thomas Sheppy, had contacted police after finding a number of notes indicating his son had taken his own life.

Dr Rob Davies, from Ledbury Market Surgery, told the inquest in written evidence that Mr Sheppy had a history of depression and had previously been seen by a crisis team. He had also recently split from his partner.

A post-mortem examination, carried out by Dr Wessels at Hereford County Hospital on January 11, showed no underlying health concerns but there was a level of carbaminohemoglobin of 69 per cent.

The inquest heard that in non-smokers, the level might be three per cent, while in smokers it was around 10 per cent. A fatal amount was considered to be 30 per cent.

A toxicology report found some evidence of ethanol but this was of a low quantity as well as some diazepam, consistent with therapeutic use.

Coroner Mark Bricknell recorded that Mr Sheppy died from carbon monoxide poisoning and that he took his own life.