Cause of retired chef’s death in France remains unexplained after inquest

Graham Taylor's inquest was heard at Carrow House. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Graham Taylor's inquest was heard at Carrow House. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

The cause of death for a retired chef from Norfolk who died in the South of France remains unclear after an inquest.

Graham Taylor, 55, from Kells Acre in Geldeston, near Beccles, died on August 7, 2018, in Saint-Chinian, France.

An inquest resumed into his death at Norfolk Coroner’s Court on August 21, after the first part of the hearing was held in France.

In the run up to his death, Mr Taylor was last seen by his sister when she visited him on July 22, but communicated with him by phone on August 1, 2, and 3.

His friend Jacqueline Toy reported Mr Taylor said he had not been felling well, experiencing vomiting and diarrhoea.


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In a statement to the coroner, Mrs Toy said Mr Taylor was a father of six and also a grandfather and had diabetes.

Concerned they had not heard from Mr Taylor, Mrs Toy contacted his landlord and went to his property at around 6pm on August 7 to check on him.

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Arriving at his flat, they could see the kitchen light was on, but were unable to open the door.

A police report heard aloud in court said: “Having heard nothing from Mr Taylor, friends went to his house in Saint-Chinian, his vehicle was outside and the apartment was locked from the incident with the keys in the lock. They called the fire brigade at 6.30pm who forced the front door.”

The fire brigade was called, headed up by Roland Fleury, who gained access to the property to see Mr Taylor lying on the sofa.

After checking his pulse, the fireman sent for a doctor to record Mr Taylor had died.

He moved into the property at the start of July 2018.

A post mortem examination was found to be inconclusive but found no evidence of major trauma and appeared to be a natural death.

The inquest heard Mr Taylor’s body was repatriated back to the UK.

The senior coroner for Norfolk Jacqueline Lake said in conclusion the medical cause of Mr Taylor’s death was unascertained.

Mrs Lake said: “Jacqueline Toy spoke with Mr Taylor prior to his death where he said to her he wasn’t feeling well. He had been vomiting since the previous Friday and had diarrhoea. There was no evidence he was seen by any doctor.”

She offered her sympathies to Mr Taylor’s family and thanked his sister for her statement during the investigations.

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