On Air Now
Heart Breakfast with Jamie Theakston and Amanda Holden 6:30am - 10am
29 April 2015, 10:51 | Updated: 29 April 2015, 10:53
Reality TV star and singer Lil' Chris from Lowestoft was found hanging at his home by a friend, an inquest has heard.
The 24-year-old pop star, real name Chris Hardman, died on March 23 after struggling with depression. An inquest into his death was opened and adjourned in his home town of Lowestoft today.
Suffolk coroner Peter Dean said paramedics and police were called to his home in Union Road, that morning and death was confirmed at 11.48am.
He added: "He had been found hanging at his home by a friend.
"Emergency services were called but attempts at resuscitation failed.'' Mr Hardman's friend, AJ Sutton, identified the body, the inquest heard.
Pathologist Richard Ball confirmed the cause of death as hanging.
Dr Dean said: "I would like to offer my thoughts and condolences to the family, friends and all those close to him for their loss.''
Speaking soon after his death, Mr Hardman's family said he was "a huge personality who will be missed by everyone who knew him''.
In a statement, they added: "Chris had struggled with mental health issues and depression in recent years.
"He was committed to helping others find better ways of overcoming this illness and publicly said he wished to find a cure.
"Despite this, his concern was always his family and his friends, whose happiness was his priority.''
Mr Hardman shot to fame in Channel 4's Rock School after Kiss frontman Gene Simmons made him the lead singer of a student band.
He was later offered a solo deal and went on to have a top five hit with Checkin' It Out in 2006.
Samaritans deputy chief executive Fiona Malcolm said: "If anyone has been affected by this news, or is struggling to cope, we would like to let people know that Samaritans is here for them if they need to talk.''
The Samaritans can be contacted by phone on 08457 909090, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can find the details of your local branch at www.samaritans.org.
The inquest was adjourned until July 28.