Inquest hears man drowned in Ravensthorpe Reservoir

editorial image

An open verdict has been recorded after an inquest into the death of a man who drowned in a reservoir.

Clarence Gillum, aged 61, of Micklewell Lane, Northampton, was found dead in Ravensthorpe Reservoir on October 1 last year.

An inquest at Northampton General Hospital on Wednesday June 5 heard Mr Gillum had mental health issues and had left his life insurance policy “in a prominent place” for his family to find. He had also talked about “not being missed”.

But coroner Anne Pember said she could not say beyond reasonable doubt that Mr Gillum intended to kill himself and that his death could have been an accident.

The inquest was told that Mr Gillum’s wife died in 1990 and, although they were separated, he struggled to come to terms with the loss, as it had been down to “errors” by Northampton General Hospital.

Sergeant Ashley Moore, who led the search for Mr Gillum, said: “I was on call at home and received a call about a high-risk missing person. A retired PC had called to say he had seen a vehicle parked for more than 12 hours at the reservoir.

“I saw an object in the water and asked for a boat. It was a body. It had obviously been in the water for some time.”

A statement from Mr Gillum’s son, Shelly, which was read to the inquest, said: “He had confided in me about how low he had been feeling. It was the first time he had confided so openly.”

A further statement from Mr Gillum’s daughter, Elreatha, said: “He was the most honest, loving person and would always put other people before him.

“He would light up any room he walked into. He is so deeply missed by everyone who knew him.”