Open verdict on death of Friskney doctor

Wednesday, 3.45pm: A DOCTOR'S badly decomposed body was found in Friskney woodland, along with a syringe and tablets, an inquest heard.

Father-of-two Dr James Layfield, 53, of Pear Tree Cottage, Friskney, was reported missing on June 14.

Lincolnshire Police put out a high risk alert after he failed to turn up to work at Beacon Medical Practice in Skegness, where he was a senior partner.

His notice, along with his office keys, were later received through the post.

On July 7, his body was discovered in Decoy Wood, Old Fen Road, along with tablets, believed to be anti-depressants, and a syringe containing milky white liquid.

Empty containers of insulin were later found at his home, but toxicology reports were inconclusive - due to the advanced decomposition of the body.

Louth District Coroner Stuart Fisher heard from Dr Layfield's wife, Samantha, who said they had been having marriage problems and had separated shortly before his disappearance.

"He was a very quiet man," she said.

"I tried to speak to him but the calls were rejected. I didn't have any indication he was intending to take his own life."

She said a neighbour had seen Dr Layfield walking near their marital home on July 12.

She also said one of their sons had spoken to him over the phone in the days prior to his disappearance.

"He seemed to be excited about seeing him for his birthday and they were making plans," she said.

An open verdict was recorded by Mr Fisher at the inquest at Horncastle Registration Office last Tuesday.

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