Manchester

Inspiral Carpets drummer Craig Gill's tinnitus 'worsened before death'

Craig Gill
Image caption Gill was one of the founding members of Inspiral Carpets, who formed in Oldham in the 1980s

The wife of Inspiral Carpets drummer Craig Gill has told his inquest he suffered from "unbearable" tinnitus in the weeks before he took his own life.

Rosie Marie Gill found the 44-year-old hanging at their home in Greenfield, Oldham, in November 2016 as she came back from a trip with their children.

She told the inquest in Heywood he had no history of depression, but his hearing had been deteriorating.

North Manchester Senior Coroner Joanne Kearsley recorded an open conclusion.

She said she was sorry she could not give his family an explanation about what had happened, but that while it was clear he had taken his own life, she could not be certain he had intended to kill himself.

She added Gill had been "one of the most influential and inspirational musicians of his generation" and "thought so highly of by everybody".

'Immense talent'

Mrs Gill told the inquest her family went to see a children's TV show recorded at Salford's MediaCityUK on 18 November, but on arrival, Gill decided not to go in.

She discovered him hanging at their home later, when she and the children returned.

Det Insp Ian Harratt said there had been no suicide note and nothing to suggest his death was "premeditated or preplanned".

"It appears to me that this is something that was completely out of the blue," he said.

Recording her conclusion, Ms Kearsley said Gill, who was a founding member of the Greater Manchester band and played with them through their heyday in the 1990s, had been "very family-orientated", a "pillar of the community" and "funny, loyal and caring".

Image caption Gill was the youngest member of Inspiral Carpets and played on their biggest hits

Speaking after the hearing, Mrs Gill said her husband had suffered from "debilitating tinnitus" for 20 years, which had been caused by him "not protecting his hearing" while working as a "successful musician" and DJ.

She said it had led to "both sleep deprivation and anxiety" and "had become so unbearable [as] he felt there was no cure".

"Instead of reaching out, Craig made the saddest and most tragic of choices."

Inspiral Carpets keyboard player Clint Boon said Gill would be remembered "for his great sense of humour, passion for music, incredible skills as a musician and devotion to his family", while the band's former lead singer Tom Hingley said he had been an "immense talent" and a "prodigious musical influence".

"We'll miss him with every beat of our hearts," he added.

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