A TEENAGER searched for ways to end his own life on a school computer before he was found hanged at his home.

Ben Walmsley made internet searches on ways to end his life while in lessons in the weeks before his death, an inquest was told.

The searches were blocked by the security firewall at his school, Philips High School in Whitefield.

The inquest, which was held in Heywood, was told that the 15-year-old, of Lowton Street, Whitefield, was found hanged at his father’s home on February 4.

The inquest was due to start in June but was postponed to today to allow Bury Council’s safeguarding team to carry a serious case review into the circumstances leading up to the teenager’s death.

Ben’s dad Darren told the inquest at Rochdale Coroner’s Court that his son struggled with academic subjects but had a passion for art and design but he had never heard Ben say he wanted to harm himself.

“Every night after school I would be working a bit later but we used to eat tea but there was nothing.

“I asked him if he didn’t want to be out with his friends, but he said he preferred to be at home and he used to go online.

Darren added: “The weekend leading up to his death he was in very good spirits and we were planning a holiday.”

On the day he died Ben had promised his dad he would stay at home and have a bath telling him: “Don’t forget to get cream eggs and the Pepsi!”

Darren went to see his girlfriend in Stockport at 2pm that afternoon, but rang him on his mobile on his arrival to check Ben was okay, but failed to get any response

Ben’s brother who went to the house to check found the curtains closed and could get no answer after Mr Walmsley returned home he found Ben in the living room.

His mum Jessica Bodlovic, said in a written statement that Ben was one of four children and had been hit by the deaths of a nephew and his paternal grandfather in the previous couple of years.

Det Inspector Michael Gladwin, who at the time was working for Greater Manchester Police, said as part of the wider investigation carried out they had spoken with pupils at Ben’s school and the fact that there appeared to be a girlfriend in his life called Ruby, but nobody knew who she was including a friend who was getting messages from her on social media including Instagram and What’s App, in which self harming was mentioned.

DI Gladwin said: “Ben had created profiles for Ruby but indications are that she didn’t exist.”

Another friend had said they were aware Ben was playing the game Doki Doki Literature Club in which one of the character’s stabs themselves and another commits suicide.

According to DI Gladwin since the online game had been launched it had been downloaded worldwide by 2 million people and had featured in one of the top computer games in 2017 and should not be played by children or vulnerable people. The game itself goes a normal to something much more sinister but has a script called Ruby.

He added: “There was evidence on Ben’s phone that he was depressed and that he didn’t want to live anymore.”

The pathologist determined that Ben had died from hanging.

The Manchester North coroner Joanne Kearsley said that Ben had committed suicide, explaining: "Ben was not an individual who anyone, including his family, recognised as being of risk of self harm. He was not constantly talking about suicide or self harm.

"The evidence we have heard now indicates, with the benefit of hindsight, that Ben was a young man who potentially had a number of complexities.

"He was making, in very subtle ways, an intention to potentially end his life, for example searches he was doing on the internet.

"This whole process seems to have escalated in the months leading up to his death."