A DOG walker is thought to have suffered a heart attack before he fell into the Leeds Liverpool Canal in Burnley, an inquest heard.

Thomas Mayock was found in the water behind the Queen Victoria pub by two joggers last January, Burnley Coroner’s Court was told.

His dog was found nearby but Mr Mayock had no belongings with him at the time and could not initially be identified.

The 64-year-old was eventually traced to his home in Talbot Street and his wife and family were informed.

An investigation was launched by Burnley Police because of the possible suspicious nature of the death and the canal bank was sealed off for a number of hours while forensic officers visited the scene.

East Lancashire coroner Richard Taylor said he asked consultant pathologist Dr Walid Salman to conduct a post-mortem examination, given the circumstances of the death.

Dr Salman said it appeared that Mr Mayock, who suffered from hypertensive heart disease and narrowing of his cardiac arteries, had had a heart attack.

East Lancashire coroner Richard Taylor said that in the circumstances the correct verdict was death by natural causes.