A CARE worker jumped from a railway bridge in Colne after he had been suspended from his job, an inquest heard.

Paul Naughton, from Colne, who was a recovering alcoholic suffering from depression, was discovered at the arches near Cotton Millworks, in Knotts Lane, on March 16, an inquest heard.

Police issued an appeal and artist's impression after they were unable to identify him at the time.

The 54-year-old, who lived in Burrans Meadow, had been unemployed before being offered a job caring for elderly people by Bupa.

Three months after Mr Naughton got the job, his employers carried out a criminal record check. They discovered that he had been charged with being a passenger in a stolen car when he was 17 and subsequently suspended him from work.

Mr Naughton’s brother John told Burnley Coroner's Court: “He was unemployed for a long time and he was proud of getting that job.”

His sister Nora said Paul had cared for their mother after she suffered a stroke, adding: “He had a vocation with the elderly.”

Mental health practitioner Roy Edwards told the inquest that in July last year, Mr Naughton was referred to him and was suffering auditory hallucinations brought on by anxiety.

Mr Edwards said: “He felt hopeless and alone. But he didn’t have thoughts or plans of self harm.”

Mr Naughton met with Mr Edwards 16 times before March. On February 3 he was prescribed the anti-depressant sertraline, then went back on February 16 to say the medication was not working. Mr Naughton had also attended Alcoholics Anonymous which he stopped doing in the weeks before his death.

Mr Naughton’s brother James said: “I spoke to people after the funeral and he had stopped answering the door to them.”

Nora said: “He had a new life here and to have a past mark harm that will have knocked him for six.”

DS Nick Hodgson, of Burnley CID, who was in charge of the investigation into Mr Naughton’s death, told the inquest there was no evidence of anything suspicious.

Mr Naughton’s body was found by a woman who lived near the railway bridge who was travelling home from work.

Richard Taylor, senior coroner for East Lancashire, recorded a verdict of suicide.