AN elderly man who was found dead in Ulverston canal took his own life because he struggled to cope with the pain from a number of medical conditions, an inquest heard.

The body of Arthur Wood, 82, was discovered in the water last year.

A hearing at Barrow Town Hall heard police had been alerted to his body by a dog walker who had discovered in the morning on December 8 last year.

An officer who attended the scene pulled Mr Wood’s body from the water.

The hearing heard his body had been in the water for some time.

He was pronounced dead at 10am.

A coroner ruled Mr Wood’s death was suicide, saying the cause of death was drowning.

The hearing was told Mr Wood was last seen by family members around 10 days earlier.

He spoke to relatives on the phone two days before his body was found and was described as being ‘not his normal self’.

Dog walker Leslie Green said: “I was walking my dog at about 10am at Ulverston canal when a woman came up to me and asked if I had a phone.

“I could see the body in the water.”

Coroner Margaret Taylor said a suicide note found by police at his home said 'he had enough' and was 'sorry to his family'.

Medical records showed Mr Wood suffered from ulcerative colitis and joint inflammation among other ailments and was on strong painkillers.

The inquest heard Mr Wood, who had taken anti-depressants in the past, used to be a keen cyclist and had clocked up more than 45,000 miles on his bike during his life.

Family members said he was born in Barrow and attended Barrow Grammar School before leaving for university to undertake a maths degree.

He served in the army then worked as an administrative assistant for Barrow Council until his retirement.

Mr Wood, who lived in Swarthmoor’s Park Road, had a brother and three sisters.

Anyone in need of help can call the Samaritan helpline number 116 123.