Suffolk

Singer Lil' Chris died by hanging, inquest hears

Chris Hardman, aka Lil' Chris Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Chris Hardman had toured with McFly after finding solo success

Singer Lil' Chris's death was caused by hanging, an inquest has heard.

Lil' Chris, whose real name was Chris Hardman, rose to fame in Channel 4's Rock School. He was found dead in Lowestoft on 23 March.

His family said the 24-year-old struggled with mental health issues and depression. A private funeral was held earlier this month.

The inquest, at St Margaret's House in Lowestoft, was told the full hearing has been adjourned until 28 July.

Suffolk coroner Dr Peter Dean conducted the short hearing, which was told the musician was found by his friend.

The emergency services were called to the house in Union Road, before Mr Hardman was declared dead an hour later by a paramedic.

Dr Dean expressed his "sympathy" to the family.

Following Mr Hardman's death, fellow musicians and fans paid tribute on social media to the singer, who had his first hit single with Checkin' It Out.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The musician's family described him as a "huge personality"

It followed his appearances in the Channel 4 series with Kiss frontman Gene Simmons in 2006, which was set at the town's Kirkley High School.

Guy Barnes, a producer who was working with Hardman, said: "As much as we're all mourning the death of the boy, everybody needs to put as much love and strength as they possibly can do into the Hardman family because I don't know how anyone deals with that."

In a statement released after Lil' Chris's death, his family said he was a "huge personality who will be missed by everyone who knew him".

"He was a hugely creative person who used this side of his personality to make others smile, to cheer people up and to make others feel better," they said.

"A real people person, he would always take the time to stop and talk, no matter who or when and we are proud that he was so well thought of by all who knew him."

Family and friends gathered for his funeral on 8 April in Gorleston, Norfolk, before releasing balloons in his favourite colour of green on Claremont Pier in his hometown of Lowestoft.

Samaritans' deputy chief executive Fiona Malcolm has said the charity had been "saddened" by his death.

"If anyone has been affected by this news, or is struggling to cope, we would like to let people know that Samaritans is here for them if they need to talk," she said.

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