Lack of resources for mental health in Northampton 'failed' my son, says mother at 21-year-old's inquest

The inquest at County Hall heard how the young man had been 'anxious' to have counselling in the weeks leading up to his death.
The inquest at County Hall heard how the young man had been 'anxious' to have counselling in the weeks leading up to his death.

A mother says her 21-year-old son was 'failed' by the lack of resources for mental health in Northampton after he took his own life last year.

The young man from Northampton was found dead in a wooded area near his home on June 8, 2018.

But at his inquest yesterday (January 16), his mother told the coroner she believed her son 'reached out for help and never received it in time' and claimed there is not enough help in Northampton for people suffering from mental health issues.

The coroner also heard that the 21-year-old had reached out to mental health charity The Lowdown for counselling - and was 58th on their waiting list in the week before he died.

His mother said: "[My son] often presented himself as a happy-go-lucky person but as he got older I think he became more troubled.

"The last time I saw him was on June 7 when I returned home early from work because I was worried for him. I thought he was doing okay. I knew he was anxiously waiting for some counselling sessions to begin.

"Unfortunately, I believe he thought these counselling sessions would not materialise.

"My son knew he could reach out for help but he never received it in time. It is my belief that [my son] was failed by the lack of resources for mental health in Northampton."

In the weeks following the young man's death, a JustGiving page launched in his memory raised more than £1,300 for mental health charities.

The page, which was launched by a friend, said: "People that knew [him] would know what a kind and generous person he was. He always had time to talk about anything on your mind and was always one of the first people to make a joke.

"RIP mate we love you and will never forget you."

The Lowdown is a charity that supports young people with mental health issues.

CEO Sharon Womersley said: "Our sincere condolences to the family and friends and we are very sorry to hear that this young person did not receive the support they needed.

"At the Lowdown we also recognise that waiting times in Northampton and nationally are too long and we have been working ourselves and with others to try to reduce them.

"However, if someone does have an acute mental health crisis, it is important that they contact their GP Surgery, go to A & E or call the Samaritans, CALM or Papyrus”."