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By Rebecca Shepherd, Stephen Jones
19:59, 10 NOV 2016 Updated 10:13, 11 NOV 2016
Laurian Bold, 31, could only sleep for three hours a night as work was piled on her Hollingworth Academy, Rochdale – as mum Gabrielle told an inquest they should have done more to help her.
A newly-promoted science teacher fell 140 feet to her death from a motorway viaduct after being overloaded with work at school, an inquest heard.
Laurian Bold, 31, was so stressed she could only sleep for just three hours a night, a coroner was told.
It was mostly due to extra tasks being piled upon her in her new role as an Assistant Head of Department, the inquest heard.
The stress got so bad that Laurian’s hair began to fall out, her skin broke out in rashes and she sought help and medication from a psychotherapist.
Laurian died from multiple injuries on the M62 on the Rakewell Viaduct, in Littleborough, Greater Manchester at 10.45am on February 26 – just a day after handing in her resignation when she returned to work following a period off sick due to severe anxiety.
At a hearing in Heywood, the dead woman’s mother Gabrielle Bold, 54, of Ashton-under-Lyne, criticised staff at Hollingworth Academy in Rochdale – claiming they should have done more to help her.
She said: ”I personally feel there were not enough hours in the day to cover all the roles she had.
“Her mind was in overdrive she couldn’t rest and there were times she was unable to concentrate.
Laurian Bold, 31, had been promoted – but couldn’t cope with the extra workload (Image: Pat Isaacs/Cavendish Press)
“Prior to this she was a thoughtful woman, caring, clever and intellectual.
“To see her under this stress was highly distressing. At times her mind was so active and racing.
“At one point she believed she was going to prison and was in such a distressed state believing someone was going to take her away.
“I needed to help her through it because her mind was not logical. As Laurian’s parents we were concerned her illness was not being taken seriously by school.
“I believe that by their actions, Hollingworth Academy have caused Laurian’s condition and ultimately her death.”
Laurien – a keen athlete who regularly took part in 5k runs for charity – was appointed to Hollingworth in 2007, six years before it was given its Academy status.
Her mother added: “Laurian then told us that with all the additional tasks she had been given at Hollingworth Academy, she was only getting three hours sleep each night.
”Laurian was a bright and energetic young woman and the sort of person who got up and made the best of every moment. She was not a person who sat still. All her pursuits were very active and this was completely out of character.”
Headmaster Darren Randle leaving the inquest into the death of teacher Laurian Bold (Image: Pat Isaacs/Cavendish Press)
The hearing was told in the run up to her death Laurien had written letters to her parents telling how she had tried to kill herself and kept a diary which described her trouble sleeping, bad dreams about work and the impact it had her health.
One entry read: “Remember, lack of sleep and anxiety make you forget things.”
Laurian’s psychotherapist, Clive Herderson, had six sessions with Miss Bold and said: “She talked about feeling overwhelmed by stress and anxiety with regards to her job – particularly since she had a different role.
“She talked about feeling tearful often and not sleeping and having palpitations.”
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The school’s headteacher Darren Randle told the hearing: “All we wanted to do was support her back into work successfully.
“We just wanted her to get back and do well. There’s not many days gone by where colleagues have not reflected on what they could have done or couldn’t have done.”
The hearing continues.