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Inquest opens into death in tent of Callie Lewis, of Beckenham, who stayed in Dover

An inquest has heard of a desperate search for a missing woman who was later found dead in a tent.

Callie Lewis, 24, from Dover, had gone to spend six nights on the campsite of a youth hostel in Cumbria.

Callie Lewis
Callie Lewis

Site manager William Betts said in a statement, read out today, that he had heard the day after Ms Lewis checked out that she had been reported missing.

Police came to the area the day after that and he described how he and an officer searched a camp field and found a tent with her body inside it.

There were also written signs including one saying: "Do not resuscitate."

A post mortem examination found Ms Lewis died of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Mr Betts explained that Ms Lewis first came to the YHA (Youth Hostel Association) Windermere Hostel in the Lake District on August 23, 2018, paying for two nights.

Ms Lewis' inquest is for two weeks. Picture used with permission of the Lewis family
Ms Lewis' inquest is for two weeks. Picture used with permission of the Lewis family

But she twice extended her stay so her checkout date ended up being August 29.

He learned she was reported missing the next day and police came to the campsite on August 31.

Her body was found that evening.

Mr Betts' statement said: "I had heard from another camper that she had gone missing.

"The next day police searched the area, believing she was still in the area.

"Callie was found dead in the tent, police took over and I assisted where I could."

Callie Lewis was found dead in a tent in the Lake District. Picture used with permission of the Lewis family
Callie Lewis was found dead in a tent in the Lake District. Picture used with permission of the Lewis family

PC Rob Dixon, of Cumbria Constabulary,in his statement, said that he was called to attend the hostel at 7pm on August 31.

He said that Kent Police had reported Ms Lewis missing.

He found the tent and explained: "I saw her in a sleeping bag and I recognised her from pictures issued.

"The tent had written signs saying; 'Do not resuscitate' and: 'Danger, toxic fumes.'

'Paramedics confirmed that she was dead."

The inquest is at theArchbishop's Palace, Maidstone
The inquest is at theArchbishop's Palace, Maidstone

Details were given on the first day of a two-week inquest at the Archbishop's Palace in Maidstone, presided by senior coroner Patricia Harding.

The inquest heard that Ms Lewis had a history of mental health issues going back to a young age, having a form of autism.

Ms Harding, senior coroner for Central and South East Kent, explained to a jury that Ms Lewis had always taken medication for depression.

Ms Lewis had moved to Sweden in 2017 but had stopped contacting her family when she returned in Britain in July 2018.

A friend of Ms Lewis told her mother, Sarah Lewis, that she intended to take her own life.

Ms Harding explained: "As a result police were involved and Callie was taken to a mental health centre where she was assessed and initially sectioned."

She was released back into the community, in Dover,on August 16, staying at Ladywell Annexe.

A week later she went to Cumbria.

The inquest heard Ms Lewis, who was single and not working at the time of her death, was born in Chatham on September 27, 1993.

Her usual home was Mackenzie Road, Beckenham, in the Kent postal area of Bromley.

A jury of five men and six women had been sworn in this morning and the hearing is scheduled to continue until November 29.

Ms Lewis was under the care ofKent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust and members from that group are also expected to give evidence.

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