A FATHER of eight who was a well known and popular figure in the Kirkby Stephen area died from natural causes after being admitted to hospital following a fall.

Bernard Bowman, 85, suffered head injuries in the fall but at an inquest at County Hall, Kendal, Cumbria county assistant coroner Robert Chapman concluded that existing medical conditions which had contributed to the fall were the primary cause of his death.

The inquest heard that Mr Bowman was born in Kirkby Stephen and as a young man travelled to Cyprus and Egypt while doing his National Service but returned to the area and set up his own painting and decorating business which proved very successful.

However, in his later years, he suffered from a number of medical conditions including dementia, and though this did not prevent him from remaining active, they led to a number of falls and one such fall led to Mr Bowman being admitted to hospital in early January 2018.

The inquest was told that despite the appropriate medical treatment, Mr Bowman's condition did not improve and he died at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle on January 27 last year.

Offering his sympathies to the family, Mr Chapman said it was clear Mr Bowman was a loving family man who had lived a busy and fulfilling life even in his later years.