Head died after 'torturous' inspection

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A headteacher found dead after a critical school inspection felt the process had been "torturous" and undermined her professional life, a fatal accident inquiry heard yesterday.

Irene Hogg's body was discovered at a secluded spot near Jedburgh in the Scottish Borders in March last year.

She was headteacher at Glendinning Primary School in Galashiels for 19 years and combined teaching with administration.

Her brother, Roger Hogg, who lives in Melbourne, Australia, told the first day of a Fatal Accident Inquiry that Ms Hogg had been on a "downward curve" in the run-up to the visit by school inspectors.

"From what I'm told about her behaviour in the week and subsequent to it by various staff, parents and friends, she was very, very distraught and almost shell-shocked at what had happened," Mr Hogg said.

"Not just the result but the whole process had been quite torturous for her and the outcome in her mind had been quite disastrous.

"She felt her whole professional being had been undermined by this process."

Ms Hogg, who lived alone in Melrose, died from "immersion in water and paracetamol toxicity", the inquiry in Jedburgh Sheriff Court heard.

The 54-year-old had been just months from early retirement, a possible course of action Ms Hogg had described to her brother.

She was said to be a strong-willed and private person, respected by her peers and liked by parents.

Despite the distance, she remained close to her only brother and visited him in Australia every year.