Blackpool builder died with wife at bedside after roof fall

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A Blackpool builder who fell from a roof died with his wife at his side.

Christopher Bevan, 53, was working on a garage in North Shore when he fell six metres on to concrete below in what his family described as a ‘tragic accident’.

Christopher Bevan

Christopher Bevan

He died from head injuries at Royal Preston Hospital surrounded by his family, who had travelled from Wales to be with him, and with his wife, and soulmate of 18 years, Joanne, laid on his bed by his side as his life-support was turned off.

In a heartfelt message to her late husband, she said: “I loved you yesterday, love you still, always have and always will.”

Christopher’s brother Stephen, 67, from Swansea, said: “He was probably the most generous person you could ever meet. He was a real character - he pinched all my jokes. He was always smiling, always laughing. Nothing was too much for him. He had not a bad word to say about anybody.

“I received a phone call that Christopher had had an accident and was at Royal Preston Hospital. Then the news came through that they had operated and he hadn’t got much of a chance, and that’s when all Hell let loose.

“He will be missed by everyone who knew him.”

Christopher, who had 30 years experience as a builder and ran Castle Building Contractors, was working with his son Nicholas, 29, on Tuesday, August 14 at around 3.30pm when he fell.

Opening an inquest into his death at Blackpool Town Hall on Thursday, coroner Alan Wilson said: “Upon arrival of paramedics he had a reduced level of consciousness and he was transferred with a suspected head injury to Royal Preston Hospital. A CT scan was carried out, revealing a haemorrhage. He was taken to surgery but it was noted that he had injuries that seemed to be unsurvivable.”

Christopher, who lived on Alderley Avenue, South Shore, died the day after his accident. A post-mortem examination was carried out, and ruled a brain injury to be the cause of death.

Christopher’s sister-in-law, Ali Gratton, 48, said: “Joanne got a call from Nicholas. He was putting tools away at the time. He didn’t see it, but he heard it, and rang the ambulance straight away.

“Luckily Joanne had a friend with her to drive her to the hospital and she was there all night. His family and some of his close friends came up from Wales, and some of the guys he worked with. A lot of people came. The doctors told us it was time to say goodbye.”

“They made space on the bed so Joanne could lie with him when they turned off the machines, and took some of his hair and handprints for his children.

“They did as much as they could.

“Christopher was one in a million. He helped young lads get on the right pathway through apprenticeships.

“He was totally devoted to Joanne. They got married last September, but they had been together for 18 years. He was completely besotted with her. It was just a tragic accident. You have to wonder why does it happen? Why do they take the good?

“We still expect him to come walking through the door.”

Stephen said his brother would be remembered as a loving husband and father, an exceptional cook and a huge fan of Elvis Presley and classical music.

He said: “He was the best brother anyone could have. There will be a massive gap in our lives. It’s going to take a long time to get over it.

“Joanne is absolutely devastated. Her heart is broken and we have got to try to fix it for her.”

Christopher’s funeral took place at Lytham Crematorium on Thursday. He leaves behind his wife, his children Natalie and Nicholas, brother Stephen, sister Julie, and grandchildren Isabelle-Rose and Romanni.

An inquest review has been scheduled for December 20, and a two-day inquest into his death scheduled for March 12 2019.