A coroner has criticised failings in the mental healthcare of a Lympstone Royal Marine recruit who took his own life.

Connor Clark, 18, had used a duvet to scale a razor wire fence at the commando training centre and get on to the nearby railway line. He was struck by a train on the morning of June 12 2021 and died of multiple severe injuries.

The teenager, from Norfolk, had made comments prior to his death about “the corporal and captain expressing implicitly and explicitly” that he was a “failure” and being the “worst recruit”.

The coroner recorded a conclusion of suicide.

Hilary Meredith Solicitors represented Connor's mother Mrs Tracy Clark at the Article 2 Inquest into the tragic loss of her son.

Following the Coroner’s conclusions, Simon Quinn, Partner and Head of Military at Hilary Meredith Solicitors said: “This is a very sad case and unfortunately yet another example of a young life lost too soon. 

“After delays by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and following a long wait for an Inquest date, we welcome the Coroner’s conclusions and hope that Mrs Clark is finally provided with the answers she needed and deserved. 

“As the MoD’s actions, inactions and failings have once again been brought to light, it is beyond clear that a change within the MoD is long overdue. Lessons need to be learnt and immediate changes made to prevent future loss of life.  This is a tragic case which included a Doctor who, in his mind was trying to help Connor, but who failed to follow policy in referring Connor on at the moment he needed it most.

“At Hilary Meredith Solicitors we have witnessed first-hand the devastating impact of suicide, not only affecting the victim but also their family and friends.   Hilary Meredith Solicitors Limited was privileged to represent Mrs Clark throughout this ordeal and would also like to thank our Counsel, Mr Christian Taylor of Exchange Chambers for his representations at the Inquest.”

Hilary Meredith Solicitors would also like to thank Mrs Clark for the strength and courage she has displayed throughout this matter and at the Inquest in particular when providing her evidence on the first day.