A man from Chorleywood took his own life on Boxing Day after a battle with depression and chronic pain, an inquest heard today.

Neil Youngman died on Friday, December 26, after over-dosing on Amitriptyline, an anti-depressant which he was taking to help curb chronic pain in his right foot.

Hertfordshire Coroner’s Court heard the 49-year-old, of Stag Lane, Chorleywood, "had a history of depression" and had seen Watford and Three Rivers Mental Health Partnership's mental health team on several occasions in the past couple of years.

The court heard Mr Youngman was resigned to the fact "he would not be out of pain, but hoped for significant relief" and had been scheduled for a peripheral nerve stimulation operation, which would have helped reduced the pain he was in.

But this had been put back twice, the court heard.

The court heard evidence from Julia Barrett, Neil’s sister, which was read out by the coroner.

She said: "Neil was excited about his operation and was totally focused on it as it would give him a much better future.

"The pain would keep him awake at night.

"On Christmas Day, he seemed normal, having Christmas dinner. He took some food home and planned to go to mums for Boxing Day. I text him about midnight to thank him for the presents. He did not reply, but I was not worried about this because it was so late.

"I know the decision was spontaneous. It was Christmas, he was in pain and alone."

Frances Cranfield, assistant coroner read out a further statement from Ms Barrett, describing her brother as a "well loved  man who totally loved his family and longed for a person to share life with."

PC Chris Holding attended Youngman’s home in Stag lane along with PC Logan after the family raised concerns that he was not answering the door.

Ms Cranfield said: "When he [the police officer] opened the door, he saw a male laying on the bed and Julia Barrett identified it was her brother.

"PC Logan informed PC Holding he had found medication packages laying on the floor next to the bed."

The medication was later confirmed as Amitriptyline and a note "apologising for the distress caused" was found at the scene.

Ms Cranfield, in her closing remarks ruling the death as a suicide, said: "He took his own life whilst the balance of his mind was disturbed.

"I give my sincerest condolences- to lose someone as young as 49 is such a tragic loss for all concerned.

"It was clear to me he was very well loved by you all."