Gardener, 35, took his own life just three days after his girlfriend and mother-of-three was found dead in suspected suicide, inquest hears
- Craig Daffern, 35, from Blackpool, was devastated by death of Jenny Shanley
- Inquest into Shanley’s death, believed to be suicide, will be heard later this year
- Landscape gardener reported missing before his body was found two days later
A ‘gifted’ gardener from Blackpool took his own life after telling friends he ‘couldn’t live without’ his girlfriend who had been found dead three days earlier.
Craig Daffern was reported missing to police on Friday, January 14, having been last seen in the Paddock Close area of Thornton-Cleveleys at 2.30pm.
Officers issued a picture of his red Mazda car as concerns for his welfare grew, but his body was found in the Catforth area of Preston two days later, on Sunday, January 16.
The 35-year-old, who attended Myerscough College and ran his own landscape gardening business, Daffern’s Design & Landscapes, had been left devastated by the death of his girlfriend Jenny Shanley, a mum-of-three found dead on January 11.
Miss Shanley’s death, believed to be a suicide, will be subject to an inquest later this year.
Craig Daffern, 35, from Blackpool, took his own life in January just days after he was left devastated by the death of his girlfriend, Jenny Shanley, a mother-of-three
An inquest at Preston Coroner’s Court on Thursday heard that Craig, of Wentworth Drive, had visited the police station on the afternoon of Friday, January 14 after he was unable to get his belongings from Jenny’s house.
He had also expressed frustration that he had not been kept updated on the investigation into her death.
Craig’s best friend Natasha, who is understood to have been the last person to speak to him, said he called her at around 2.25pm. Craig told Jenny, ‘I’ve had enough, but I love you all’, before the phone went dead.
Worried friends and family desperately tried to get hold of Craig, but eventually his phone was turned off.
He was reported missing and two days later his body was found near a telephone exchange building in School Lane.
Craig’s mother Patricia paid tribute to the gardener’s ‘smile and larger than life personality’
His mother Patricia Daffern, who also has two daughters, Heather and Amanda, said that Craig had previously attempted to take his own life in June 2020, a statement read out during the inquest revealed.
He had been referred to mental health services, but did not attend an appointment and eventually discharged himself.
Returning a conclusion of suicide, Area Coroner Richard Taylor said: ‘Families will always ask why someone has done what they have done, but I am afraid I can’t answer that. All I can answer is the who, when, where and how.
‘Craig Daffern was found dead on January 16 on School Lane, Catforth, Preston, having suspended himself by the neck.’
An inquest at Preston Coroner’s Court into Craig Daffern’s death recorded a finding of suicide
Speaking to LancsLive after the inquest, Craig’s family said: ‘Craig was well-loved by his family and all who knew him, especially with his smile and larger than life personality.
‘He is so sadly missed and he will live on in our memory, remembering and celebrating his life as he would have done.
‘His family and friends would like to thank everyone who has paid their respects and sent heartfelt wishes at this tragic time.’
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