An events planner gassed herself to death after she was left heartbroken by the break up of an affair she was having with a married man, an inquest heard.
Emily Henthorn, 25, from Leigh, Greater Manchester, had harboured hopes of moving into a house with Andrew Hardman and settling down with him after they began an illicit romance when helping plan weddings and christenings at a masonic hall.
She met Mr Hardman in October 2018 and it is thought the pair began an affair in January. During the relationship they began house-hunting together and saw several properties.
However, when Mr Hardman confessed to his wife about having a mistress, the couple agreed to save their marriage and he ended his five month affair with Miss Henthorn.
Emily Henthorn, 25, from Leigh, Greater Manchester, (pictured in a wedding dress shortly before her death) had harboured hopes of moving into a house with Andrew Hardman and settling down with him after they began an illicit romance when helping plan weddings and christenings at a masonic hall. The pair had looked at properties together
During a subsequent conversation, a devastated Miss Henthorn told Mr Hardman: ‘If I can’t live with you, I can’t live without you’ and even asked if she and his wife could ‘share him.’
Just days later on May 7 Miss Henthorn was found dead in bed by her father after she gassed herself.
Inquiries revealed she had watched a video of how to take her own life and had left several suicide notes for her family.
The hearing was told Miss Henthorn described as having an ‘outgoing, attractive, vivacious personality’ had studied maths at Manchester University but dropped out and worked in the compliance department for Bolton Council as well as holding a part time job as events co-ordinator at Leigh Masonic Hall.
Mr Hardman told the Bolton inquest: ‘At first we were nothing more than acquaintances or friends but a short time later friendship turned into a relationship and that relationship carried on for about five months.
Mr Hardman confessed to his wife about having a mistress, they agreed to save their marriage and he ended his five month affair with Miss Henthorn leaving her devastated. Miss Henthorn (pictured) told Mr Hardman: ‘If I can’t live with you, I can’t live without you’ and even asked if she and his wife could ‘share him’
‘There had been an intention to live together and on April 27 I told my wife about the relationship. But following a discussion with her we decided to resurrect our relationship and I ended the relationship with Emily. I saw when she was working at the hall but she said words to the effect of: ‘if I can’t live with you I can’t live without you’.
‘I tried to calm her by saying: ‘you didn’t want to do anything silly’ and persuaded her she had a life to live. But when I spoke to her on Saturday May 2, by phone she said: ‘without you my life is not worth living’ and repeated it.
‘She seemed very calm but I was concerned about her and I rang her dad to say I was concerned. I also rang mental health services and the police and phoned Samaritans as well and left a message. Spoke to her again on that day. Her phone rang my phone and police were at Emily’s house and she was fine and she said: ‘everything’s okay.’
‘She said her dog was not eating and suggested I come round but I didn’t go to the address.’
Mr Hardman said he then got a text message from Miss Henthorn asking whether his wife would ‘share’ him with her and added: ‘I did respond. I can’t remember what I said but it was a ridiculous question to ask. I said I would ring her back I did ring her back but she didn’t answer.
‘On the Sunday I sent a number of messages asking how she was but got no response. The next contact I had when her dad phoned me up on the Saturday to say she had died.’
Miss Henthorn’s father Darren said: ‘She was determined, single minded, strong willed and at times controlling but she was very independent.
Emily had been suffering from mental health issues for about four to five years and her issues then brought her into conflict with other people and members of the family and those close to her. If things weren’t going her way things would flare up.
In the days after the break up, Miss Henthorn (pictured) phoned her sister threatening to take her own life and police and paramedics were called to her home. But no action was taken after she insisted she was fine
‘Emily was always a very private person and wouldn’t readily talk about things because she felt ashamed about it and didn’t want her family and other people around her knowing what she was going through. I was aware about Emily and Andrew Hardman but I didn’t know the full details. I just knew that it had ended and I knew that Mr Hardman hadn’t moved in with her.’
In the days after the break up, Miss Henthorn phoned her sister threatening to take her own life and police and paramedics were called to her home. But no action was taken after she insisted she was fine.
Mr Henthorn said: ‘Emily was a very complicated person I don’t know myself whether threats she made where for show, sympathy or to get attention or whether she did mean them. Seen as that is the way she ended her life perhaps they where real.
‘She always said she had a plan where she wanted to be by the time she was 25 and she was 25 at the time she died. She never said what the plan was but I knew it wasn’t the life she was living – she wanted better things for herself. At her funeral people who where there had no idea what Emily her family had gone through. She was very good at concealing her underlying problems.’
Amy Corrigan, a former girlfriend of Miss Henthorn said: ‘She was very old headed at 25 in that you should have your life sorted and own a house, married and stable career. For some reason she set that goal for 25.
‘On May 1, Emily made contact at 11.32pm and I started texting and phoning her. She said: ‘I am ending my life tomorrow – if there’s anything you want to say to me, say it now before it’s to late.’
‘That’s why I rang the emergency services straight away. I tried to contact her also tried to contact Darren and her sister but couldn’t get through. Emily said: ‘There’s a lot gone on and I can’t do it anymore.’
Leanne Blake, a mental health services nursing practitioner, called Miss Henthorn on May 2 following a visit from police. Miss Blake said: ‘Emily didn’t want a referral to mental health services at all and I offered to come into for a face to face assessment that day. She declined all help and said she was fine’ Coroner Alan Walsh recorded a conclusion of suicide
‘She just said I wont be able to understand what had happened to her in the last few months and then she put the phone down. I tried to ring her back for days but got no response. Its when she said: ‘I don’t want to be prevented – I want to be allowed to end my life’ which is what scared me the most. She would never reach out for help.’
Leanne Blake a mental health services nursing practitioner called Miss Henthorn on May 2 following the visit from police. Miss Blake said: ‘She told me of a relationship breakdown with a married gentleman. He had left his wife for her and then changed his mind the same day and gone back. She said she had a method of manipulation to try and get the gentleman to stay with her.
‘Emily didn’t want a referral to mental health services at all and I offered to come into for a face to face assessment that day. She declined all help and said she was fine.’
Recording a conclusion of suicide, coroner Alan Walsh said: ‘Emily was 25 and had a plan to achieve certain objectives which sadly in her mind hadn’t achieved at the age of 25.
‘She appears to be someone who had this split personality issues. To the outside world she was the centre of attention, attractive and very out going and when she was in that mind she was very attractive and appealing to all those who met her.
‘All those who met her would not believe what sad issues those close to her experienced. Over the last few few days there had been a breakdown of a relationship and she was devastated by that breakdown. She was someone who was clearly devastated in the conversation she had with Amy and was quite clear she was intending to end her life.
I do believe that social media and YouTube open up mechanisms of causing death to those that have been vulnerable.
‘I am greatly saddened by the fact Emily was outgoing, attractive, vivacious personality. Saddest that she had that other side of her personality. Together with possible her unfulfilled objective to be achieved by the age of 25 and was not achieved. That came together sadly in that last two weeks of her life caused her to act in that way and tragically ended her life in that way. That finding would be unimaginable to all of us in the court.’
If you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this article then you can call the Samaritans 24 hour helpline on 116 123.