Coroner records Wisbech teenager’s death as suicide

Abbie Bannister

A coroner has recorded the death of 19-year-old Abbie Bannister (pictured) as suicide. - Credit: Family collect

A Wisbech teenager warned loved ones that she was going to take her own life just hours before her body was found, a coroner’s court heard.

Abbie Bannister, 19, sent a series of text messages to her boyfriend and father saying that she was feeling suicidal and “going to end it”.

“You’ll never see me again,” said one of the messages, some of which were read at an inquest into her death today at Peterborough Town Hall.

The inquest heard her boyfriend Jack Ovendale was not in Wisbech at the time, and told her “not to do anything silly”. Abbie's father had not seen the messages.

Simon Milburn, Assistant Coroner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, told the inquest Abbie was later found on a footpath off Meadowgate Lane in the early hours of July 22.


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Emergency services were called to the scene, but she could not be saved.

The inquest heard Abbie had been suffering with anxiety and depression.

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Mr Milburn asked her mother Samantha Durose if she thought Abbie had intentionally chosen to take her life or it was meant to be a cry for help.

Fighting back tears, she replied: “I think it was a bit of both. She knew if she did that there would be no turning back.

“We had spoken about it before because one of her friends did it... I just can’t believe she done it, all she had to do was come home.”

She added: “My partner went out looking for her. He said: ‘If I’d have turned left, I would’ve found her’. We just thought she had had gone back to her boyfriend’s.”

Abbie, of Mill Close, Wisbech, was also one and a half times the legal drink drive limit of alcohol, had five times the therapeutic dosage of her medication in her system and tested positive for ecstasy.

Mr Milburn said: “While she had something to drink and had taken some medication, it’s clear that those weren’t in quantities that wouldn’t have necessarily completely affected her state of mind...

“... but on balance of [all other] probabilities, very sadly, I’m going to conclude that Abbie did commit suicide.”

He recorded a verdict of suicide and offered his condolences to Abbie’s family.

  • The Samaritans’ helpline number is 116 123 and it's open 24 hours.

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