A “PASSIONATE” musician died after jumping from a cliff.

Thomas Hollands leapt from a cliff top in Marine Drive, Brighton, on October 22 last year.

An inquest into the 23-year-old’s death was held at Brighton Coroner’s Court on Friday.

The court heard that Thomas, known as Tom, had called his family on the phone shortly before the incident.

Tom, of Gladstone Terrace in Brighton, who suffered with obsessional thoughts and anxiety had told his father he was near the cliff edge.

Speaking at the inquest, Tom’s father said: “We persuaded him to walk away from the cliffs and agreed to go out for a meal that evening. At the end of the call he said ‘sorry’.

“We thought he said it because of the worry he’d caused, but with hindsight it was about what he decided to do.

“If we had thought it was anything else we would have stayed on the phone or got in the car straight away.”

Two members of the public who were walking their dogs on the undercliff walk saw Tom fall and called for an ambulance.

Paramedics tried to resuscitate him for an hour but Tom was pronounced dead at 3.19pm.

Police attended the cliff top area just east of the junction between Marine Drive and Greenways and found a bicycle lying on its side with a rucksack and plimsolls. A wallet inside the rucksack contained a driving licence and a railcard which identified Tom.

DS Joe Jardine of Brighton CID was satisfied Tom’s death was not suspicious, the court heard.

Tom, who worked as a laboratory technician at a cosmetics company, was described as a “passionate” musician who had attended Brighton Music College (BIMM) between 2014 and 2017.

The court heard he had a “working diagnosis” of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) which had not been officially confirmed and there was a series of obsessional things he had to do before he left the house.

In 2018 he reported feelings of anxiety and obsessional thoughts to his GP and was prescribed with the antidepressant fluoxetine.

Tom’s father said: “For most of 2019 he felt he was getting better and we were all very happy. We thought the OCD was intrusive but we did not realise the risk of it getting this serious. It came as a shock to everyone.”

Tom had wanted to reduce his medication and temporarily stopped taking the fluoxetine in September 2019.

Coroner Veronica Hamilton-Deeley said: “Within a month of stopping it he reported a steep decline and suicidal thoughts to his GP, who said he must start taking the fluoxetine again, as there was clearly a connection.”

Ms Hamilton-Deeley recorded a conclusion of suicide and Tom’s cause of death was given as multiple injuries due to a fall from height, with obsessional thoughts and anxiety as additional causes.

She said: “I think both these huge difficulties he was trying to battle with have got to be listed. The word ‘overwhelming’ is one that springs to my mind. I think that’s what happened at that last moment – that he became completely overwhelmed.”

After the inquest Martin Wright, college principal of BIMM, paid tribute to Tom.

He said: “Tom was talented, always creative and used his time at BIMM Brighton to hone his guitar and writing skills whilst developing his own musical style.

“Tom was a cultured student and achieved highly in both practical and academic studies, graduating with a 2:1 BA (hons) in professional musicianship in 2017. His performance at our end of term show with his band, Oceans, was a particular highlight for him during his time with us. BIMM staff and students send our deepest sympathies to Tom’s family and friends at this most difficult time.”

If you have been affected by this story you can call Samaritans on 116 123, or Music Minds Matter, a support line for the UK music community, on 0808 802 8008.