1. ITV Report

Homeless man found dead near church after sleeping rough in freezing temperatures

The man was found near St Swithun's Church in Retford. Credit: BPM Media

A homeless man has been found dead in a tent near a church, after sleeping rough in freezing temperatures.

The man, named locally as Ben, had been sleeping near St Swithun's Church in Retford, Nottinghamshire.

Nottinghamshire Police said they were made aware of a "sudden death" at 8.40am on Tuesday 27 February. A file will be handed to the coroner.

Scout leader Hazel Newstead, who knew Ben, said she and he husband had come across him a week before his death.

She said he was originally from the south and had moved between Retford, Worksop and Gainsborough, Lincolnshire.

We're so shocked and saddened by this. He seemed to be a lovely, friendly chap.

He was living in a tent between a wall and the old church hall off Churchgate near our scout hut.

He told us he was 53 and used to be a brickie - he even offered to re-do the brickwork on our building.

We used to chat to Ben over the wall. He was happy here and didn't want to go to a shelter in Worksop.

– Hazel Newstead, scout leader, speaking about Ben

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