Two men suffering serious mental health problems travelled to East Sussex to carry out a suicide pact, an inquest heard.

A clifftop stroller said he saw the two leap from cliffs at Beachy Head, seconds apart.

The Eastbourne inquest heard Christopher Jost, 27 and Kenneth Hall, 43, were being treated for bipolar personality disorders at the same Portsmouth hospital.

Stephen Blackman, from Hythe, said he was walking with his girlfriend on April 4, Good Friday.

He said: "I was teaching my girlfriend how to take photographs and we were facing towards Eastbourne.

"I was looking through where she was pointing the camera and I saw a person run in front of her and fall off.

"There was a lapse of perhaps three or four seconds, then another person dropped a bag and ran and jumped off."

Mr Blackman called the police and coastguards retrieved the bodies from the beach 250ft below.

Mr Jost's fiance Claire Jost, who took her former partner's name after his death, and his mother were at the inquest.

The inquest heard Mr Jost, a painter and decorator, had experienced bouts of mania and crippling depression.

He was being treated as an in-patient at St James Hospital, Portsmouth.

Mr Hall had also gone to the hospital on the morning of Good Friday and told staff he was feeling suicidal.

It was not unusual for Mr Hall to express his feelings in that way and staff did not call police, even when he told them he was going to Beachy Head with Christopher Jost.

In a letter, Mr Hall's mother told the inquest her son had difficulty coping with the break-up of his marriage.

Coroner Alan Craze recorded a verdict of suicide.