A YOUNG tree surgeon who had tried to defeat a drug problem died of an overdose of heroin and cocaine.

Gino Rowson, 22, was found dead in bed in his caravan at the premises of his employer on the edge of the New Forest, an inquest heard.

The hearing was told that Mr Rowson, of North Gorley, was found by his employer Andrew Harris on the morning of Sunday, March 24. A small glass pipe and illegal drugs were close to his body.

A report by Dr Jeremy Rowland, a consultant psychiatrist at Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust, said Mr Rowson had started smoking cannabis at the age of ten and harder drugs such as heroin and ketamine from 19.

Mr Rowson had ambitions to go to university to study engineering but suffered social anxiety. He had recently ceased engaging with the early intervention psychosis team and taking medication, the hearing heard.

His mother Gillian Rowson told the inquest that although he had his family, friends and a supportive environment, Mr Rowson "always had a profound lack of confidence, even though he was loved by everyone who got to know him".

"He was a very lovely person. But the important part of that was he wasn't able to feel that in himself, that he was worth that support and affection," she said.

"The way he felt inside himself was it was difficult to be here.

"When he used substances that put him out of himself he felt more comfortable.

"Unfortunately he really found it hard to break that habit. He found it painful to be here.

"I think he was really brave and strong and worked really hard to be here."

The police were called and PC Jon Kennett told the hearing there were no suspicious circumstances.

Consultant pathologist Eleanor Janes said the cause of death was opiate toxicity.

Senior Coroner Grahame Short said Mr Rowson had tried and failed to break his addiction. There was no evidence that Mr Rowson had intended to kill himself and recorded drug-related death.