Original article no longer available
The Cumberland News
Published on 12/05/2006
By staff reporter
Suicide: Kathleen Walton had counselling and was prescribed medication for her depression
A VERDICT of suicide has been recorded into the death of a well-respected agricultural show secretary.
Kathleen Walton, 41, had been receiving counselling and was prescribed medication for depression in the weeks before she took her own life by swallowing weedkiller.
A passer-by found the Northumberland County Show secretary in her car at Edges Green, near Haltwhistle, on December 23 last year.
She was taken to hospital in Hexham after telling the man she had taken weedkiller. She was later transferred to Wansbeck General Hospital in Ashington, where she died on Christmas Eve.
An inquest in Morpeth on Wednesday heard that a suicide note was discovered in her car.
It was this which North Northumberland Coroner Ian McCreath said convinced him that she intended to take her life.
A post mortem confirmed her death was caused by the toxic effects of the herbicide she had swallowed.
Ms Walton, who lived at Greenhead on the Cumbria and Northumberland border, had been secretary of the Northumberland Show for more than 15 years. She also ran three major sheep societies in the north of England and did a lot of voluntary work for the local young farmers’ club.