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Family’s warning after son died in an accident in Thailand

Paul Ancell, 30 came to Thailand to realize his martial arts dream, but sadly died after crashing a rented motorbike while two times over the drink-drive limit.

Paul, who was not wearing a helmet, came off a powerful Yamaha on a stretch of road notorious for bike accidents in April 2012.

Yesterday his family, who had to raise £4,500 to have his body flown home, warned others to wear protective equipment on motorbikes and to have travel insurance.

The Brighton Coroner’s Court inquest heard that the professional mixed martial arts practitioner, from Tangmere, travelled to Thailand to train with Thai fighters.

Friend Andrew Alderson, who gave evidence via a written statement, told how a group had gone for a drink in a sports bar in Phuket on the evening of April 21.As others began to walk home, Mr Ancell is said to have “jumped on his bike” and “shot off down the road”.  Five minutes later, Mr Alderson received a call from a mutual friend to say Mr. Ancell had crashed.

Within minutes Thai police officers were on the scene and carried out a crash investigation. The report said that he was travelling at speed before hitting a road barrier and being thrown from the vehicle the post-mortem reviled he was more than two times over the UK drink-drive limit.

Dr Mark Taylor, who carried out a further post-mortem in the UK, said the cause of death was a severe head injury contributed to by the alcohol in his system. Coroner Karen Henderson recorded an accidental verdict.

Speaking after the hearing Mr Ancell’s aunt, Gina Measor, paid tribute to her nephew. The 53-year-old said: “He was a gentle giant really. His passion was martial arts but above everything else he was a loving dad. His five-year-old is finding it difficult and she gets upset when she sees other children with their dads but we’ve made her a box with photos and memories.”

Mrs Measor, of Ravens Road, Shoreham, added: “I want to get across just how important it is to wear a helmet and protection. This also shows how important it is to have insurance. If it wasn’t for the kind-hearted donations from the community we may never have had him back for a funeral.”

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