Solider inquest: Father vows to take action against MoD

The father of a soldier who collapsed and died during a training exercise says he will now take out an action for corporate manslaughter against the MoD.

Corporal Joshua Hoole, from Ecclefechan in Scotland, died during a march on one of the hottest days of the year in July 2016.

The 26-year-old was carrying 25kg of equipment when he collapsed 400m from the end of the eight-mile annual fitness test course in Brecon, Wales.

An inquest today found his death was not a result of unlawful killing.

Cpl Hoole's death came three years after three Army reservists died during an SAS selection march in the Brecon Beacons, Wales.

In a statement his father Phillip Hoole said he would bring a corporate manslaughter action against the Ministry of Defence - but not before inviting them to engage with him in "meaningful conversation."

He said: "We all have a duty of care towards our armed forces. There is no place for bullying, but there is a place for tough progressive training with a safety umbrella that is meant to be there to prevent those deaths which areclassed as being preventable, like my son's."

"I have started to put a number of documents together and I intend to take out a civil action against the Ministry of Defence for corporate manslaughter."

An inquest found Hoole's death was not a result of unlawful killing. Credit: Family of Hoole.

Mr Hoole continued: "I hope, now that the inquest is over, that they will approach me and have a meaningful conversation regarding not just those failings but how they can make improvements when they communicate with families going through the grieving process who, ultimately, just want honesty so they can start to get some form of closure."

Senior coroner Louise Hunt concluded the inquest on Friday and said she had "grave concerns" about the army's "ability to learn from previous mistakes."

Brigadier Christopher Coles from the Ministry of Defence said he regrets the death of Corporal Hoole in a statement after the verdict was read.

He said: "I'd like to begin by saying how very much I regret Corporal Joshua Hoole's death while training for a career course in July 2016.

"Having myself given evidence to the coroner and having spoken with members of Corporal Hoole's family, I know that he was an able, talented, dedicated and highly promising junior NCO with a bright career ahead of him.

"I'd like to extend my condolences and those of the Army and Ministry of Defence to his family and friends."

He continued:"The MoD has acknowledged the policy in place which govern the training Corporal Hoole was undertaking could've been better and was in areas inconsistent. While much work has already been done to address this, we will seek to ensure that it is refined and improved to ensure a tragedy like Corporal Hoole's death is not repeated."

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