Top Tory Died Of Natural Causes

27 September 2011, 16:11 | Updated: 27 September 2011, 16:41

A coroner's found Christopher Shale, who was found dead in a toilet at Glastonbury Festival, died from heart disease.

The Chairman of the West Oxfordshire Conservative Association was discovered slumped in a backstage cubicle at the festival earlier this year.

At his inquest in Wells Town Hall today, East Somerset coroner Tony Williams ruled that he died from natural causes.

The inquest heard he was missing on the site for around 18 hours before he was found near the Other Stage.

His widow Nikki paid tribute to her husband and hit out after the hearing at ``inaccurate speculation'' regarding his death.

She added:

"It was always obvious to us, and confirmed very soon afterwards, that my husband, my darling husband, died of natural causes.

"It has been a cause of great regret to our children, to Chris's family and all our friends, that so much inaccurate speculation has appeared in the media with regard to the circumstances of his death.

"This has really not helped us at a very, very difficult time.

"We now need to move forward with the rest of our lives.''

Police found the businessman's body as he was quoted in the Mail on Sunday bemoaning difficulties his party faced in recruiting new members.

He was reported to have written: "No reason to join. Lots of reasons not to.''

Downing Street confirmed it had contacted Mr Shale on Saturday June 25 to warn him that the note he had written had been leaked to the newspaper.

Confusion reigned at Glastonbury after festival founder Michael Eavis said the wealthy businessman's death could be a "suicide situation''.

But police dismissed the claim, with sources saying he was thought to have suffered a heart attack.

The Prime Minister said at the time he was "devastated'' as he described him as a valued friend and a "big rock'' in his life.

Mr Cameron said he and wife Samantha were great friends of the Shales.

Outside of politics Mr Shale was the chief executive of Oxford Resources Ltd, a cost reduction company based in Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, close to his home at Old Meadow House, in the village of Over Norton.