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Coroners’ court recorded a verdict of accidental death for Andrew Coogan in the Shorrocks Hill fire

A fire at a the stables in which a 45-year-old man died was caused by an electical fault it was heard at Sefton Coroners’ court. The court heard that emergency workers were called to the stables block at Shorrocks Hill in Formby on August 25th last year.

Andrew Coogan’s body was found at the scene and later formally identified. He had worked at the stables for some time. Eight horses also died when the blaze ripped through the stables near the exclusive Shorrocks Hill Country Club.

Coroners’ officer Jeanette Lesbirel read out a statement that explained that an investigation by Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service found that an electrical fault in a fridge or with the incoming electrical supply caused the fire.

She also said that a post-mortem into Mr Coogan’s death found that he died from the inhalation of smoke and fire fumes.

A police report recommended no further action after all lines of enquiry were completed.

Coroner Christopher Sumner said that Mr Coogan died after inhaling smoke and fire fumes. He said the fire was probably caused by a fault with the fridge or with the electrical supply.

He recorded a verdict of accidental death.

Mr Coogan’s family did not attend the hearing but they previously paid tribute to him saying:

"Coogy was loved by his family.

He was a devoted uncle and the only brother of Lisa. Coogy helped so many people along the way and was a pleasure to be around. We will miss him dearly."


The body of a man has been found inside a caravan that was destroyed in a fire at Shorrocks Hill this morning. Horses were also killed in the fire.

Merseyside Police can confirm officers attended a fire in Formby along with colleagues from Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service this morning (Thursday, 25 August 2016). Emergency services were called to Shorrocks Hill Country Club, Lifeboat Road to reports of a fire at stables at about 5.40am. The fire, which has been extinguished by Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, completely destroyed the stable building and a caravan. On arrival firefighters entered the caravan and found the body of a man inside. Formal identification is yet to take place. A number of horses were found to have died in the stables. The cause of the man’s death is not yet known and a joint Merseyside Police and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service investigation into the cause of the fire is underway. The scene has been cordoned off for examination and house-to-house enquiries are underway. No-one else has been reported injured. Anyone with information is asked to contact Merseyside Police on 0151 777 3055 or on the 101 number. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Three Fire appliances, three Police vans and numerous Police cars were all in attendance at the scene.

It is not known at this point what the cause of the fire was but one onlooker said there were small explosions. The stable block is completely destroyed.

The fire also killed eight horses leaving the whole of Formby in shock. Andrew Coogan who was 45 years old was a very popular man and well liked by everyone having helped out at the estate for some time. The family of Andrew Coogan, who tragically died in the fire yesterday at Shorrocks Hill, have paid tribute to him.

Scene of the fire just after it had been distinguished

Photo by Adam Lynch

The fire could be seen from all over Formby before 6am this morning

Photo by Kayla Boden

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