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Lancashire - A teacher who inspired pupils to "believe in themselves" hanged herself after struggling with low self-esteem, an inquest heard.

Anna McLeod, 32, brought "sparkle, laughter and love" to the classroom but lacked self-worth and feared "letting down" her school.

Her husband Robert paid tribute to his "beautiful" and "clever" wife, who was found dead at their home last November. He said the English teacher "would dish out loads of compliments, but never take any for herself".

The inquest heard Mrs McLeod, from Garstang, Lancashire, had a "big lack of self-worth" which her husband called the "basis of her issues". However, a coroner said her intention was "not clear" and recorded a narrative conclusion.

Mr McLeod, 35, a design engineer, told the Lancaster inquest: "Not only did she have friends, but she had a good family as well. She loved her job but was always worried about letting down the school, her pupils and colleagues."

At the time of the tragedy, colleagues at Our Lady’s Catholic College in Lancaster, where Mrs McLeod had taught since 2010, told how she "inspired pupils so they enjoyed their learning and believed in themselves".

Headmistress Helen Seddon said she was a "caring" and "much-loved" teacher and head of year, who also ran a boys’ reading group and helped with expeditions for the Duke of Edinburgh Award.

"She filled classrooms and staff room with sparkle, laughter and love," she added.

The family’s GP Dr Joanna Smith told the inquest that Mrs McLeod was prescribed anti-depressants in 2015 but said she was feeling "well" two years later. She had no history of ‘self-harm or suicidal thought’, Dr Smith added.

Recording his conclusion, coroner James Newman acknowledged Mrs McLeod "did lack self-esteem and could not see herself for who she was".

But he said her intention was "not clear in the evidence", adding: ‘I have to be sure that, on a balance of probabilities, she took her own life and did so with intent.

"I have no difficulty with the first part, but not the second."

Daily Mail