'We were not told our mum was at risk of suicide'

James Gulliford, son of Jackie Gulliford, said the family would have reacted differently if they had known everything. Picture: Mark Hemsworth

James Gulliford, son of Jackie Gulliford, said the family would have reacted differently if they had known everything. Picture: Mark Hemsworth

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Business reporter. Call me on 01865 425439

THE family of a 61-year-old grandmother, who died after going missing, has said they were not properly informed how at risk she was of self-harming.

Oxfordshire Coroner’s Court yesterday ruled Jackie Gulliford from Eynsham was “likely” to have committed suicide.

She went missing from her home on January 14 during the floods. Her disappearance sparked a massive police search. However, her body was not found until March 15 in the River Evenlode near Cassington Mill.

Oxford Mail:

Jackie Gulliford.

It emerged at yesterday’s inquest into her death, held at County Hall, that she had been discharged from the Warneford Hospital a week before she went missing.

The inquest heard she had been treated at the Headington facility for depression since December after consuming bleach. After being discharged, Mrs Gulliford, a senior accounts assistant at Worcester College for 16 years, returned to the hospital as a day patient but was told to have a day off – the day she went missing.

After the hearing, her daughter Sarah Cornett, 33, said the family was not told she was at high risk of self-harm or suicide until it was revealed in an investigation report released in April.

Mrs Cornett from Witney, who is a former mental health worker, said: “If we had had the information about risk, we could have supported mum in the community. She would have made a full recovery.”

Mrs Gulliford’s son James, 29, said: “If we’d known everything our reactions would have been very different.”

He said he became concerned when his mother was in the hospital’s day centre, in a group painting activity, and talked to her on the phone.

“I said, ‘Should we be worried about you drawing a cliff?’ And she replied, ‘I hope not.’ And that was the last time I spoke to her.”

The inquest heard a meeting was held at Warneford Hospital, run by Oxford Health, to discuss Mrs Gulliford’s release and risk assessment.

The family said her husband Bruce, 63, was not invited but the hospital’s consultant psychiatrist, Dr Olga-Maria Tsatalou, told the inquest she believed he did attend, even though she was not present herself.

Recording a narrative verdict, assistant coroner Nicholas Graham said: “Mrs Gulliford had a history of psychiatric illness and, although it is likely she took her own life, it is not possible to prove beyond reasonable doubt that she did so.”

An Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust spokesman said an investigation was being finalised in conjunction with the family.

  • Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS, SPORT and JAYDEN depending on what services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.

Our top stories

UPDATE: Oxford City properties hit by power cut 'back on by 11.30pm' say SSE

Oxford Mail: light bulb with power lines

8:44pm Monday 27th April 2015

PROPERTIES affected by power cuts in Oxfordshire today are being brought back online in phases.

Murder accused is kept in custody after stabbing victim found in car

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

A 34-YEAR-OLD will appear in court tomorrow accused of murdering the man found fatally wounded in a car in Barton.

Charity dance competition is strictly sensational

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

ALL the glitz and glamour of the ballroom was brought to Oxford’s New Theatre on Saturday as couples danced off in the Strictly Oxford competition.

Mum fights to have vital drug made available through NHS

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

A MUM whose husband and young son are fighting the same rare life-threatening disease is campaigning to gain access to vital medication on the NHS.

Footballers’ tribute to tragic Kyle

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

FRIENDS and family of tragic Kyle Byfield came together for a memorial football tournament in Banbury on Sunday.

Pensioner will fly village’s flag again 70 years on from VE Day

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Monday 27th April 2015

YOUNG Roy Hanson was given the task of flying the Union Jack on his village church tower on VE Day in 1945.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree