A heartbroken Doncaster father has paid tribute to his ‘wonderful’ son who died in a ‘tragic and terrible’ accident within hours of arriving on holiday in Magaluf.
John Frankland said his son, Ian John Frankland, had been looking forward to going to the Spanish holiday resort for a friend’s stag do in May this year.
But an inquest at Doncaster Coroner’s Court heard that on the evening after his arrival, Ian ‘lost his balance’ and fell down some stairs, causing a fatal bleed in his skull.
John told the inquest: “He was a wonderful son. He was a pretty easy going chap. He took life in his stride, he enjoyed his life. He worked hard and played hard. He had many friends. He was a gentle man and a gentleman.”
The inquest heard that Ian, aged 36, of The Paddocks, Auckley, travelled with a group of friends to Magaluf, Majorca, from Manchester Airport early on Friday, May 15.
They arrived at their hotel in the early afternoon and then went out for drinks.
Ian’s friend, David Baum, told the inquest: “We left the hotel in the early evening and went to a bar called Mambo’s. We stayed there for a couple of hours. We were having a laugh and a good time.”
He told the court that everyone had been drinking steadily during the day, but none of the men were drunk.
He added: “I’ve known Ian for years and years, I’ve been on stag dos with him before, lads’ holidays, and I’ve never seen him drunk. I’ve just seen him merry.
“He was a big lad but very steady. For him to fall over is so out of character.”
David said the group decided to separate as some of the men wanted to stay out, while others wanted to go for a meal or return to the hotel.
Some, including Ian, decided to leave alone as they had been to the resort many times before.
Between 6.30pm and 7.30pm, Ian told friends he was going to nearby Stereo Bar as he was friends with the owners. But the court heard Ian did not go to that venue and instead he went to Mulligans Bar, seemingly to use the bathroom.
David said: “Ian left the group, this was not unusual. All the lads kick themselves now because we weren’t with him, but we will have to deal with that.
“Perhaps we would have gone with him if it was somewhere we didn’t know, but he knew the place so well.”
David returned to the hotel with other friends and a short while later Spanish police knocked on the door to their room.
“They showed us Ian’s passport and asked if we knew him,” said David.
“They said he had been in an accident. We didn’t know what had happened, we wondered if maybe he had been attacked.
“Then they told us that he had fallen and died. I couldn’t believe it.”
Paying tribute to his friend, who was nicknamed ‘Beany’, he added: “He was a legend. There wasn’t another one like him. He was a good guy.”
Detective Constable Kathleen Coulter told the court she had received a report from Spanish police stating CCTV footage showed Ian going in to Mulligans Bar and heading straight for some stairs which led down to the toilet, but British police had not seen the footage.
Det Con Coulter added: “Police were called at 8.07pm and found a man at the bottom of the stairs bleeding from a cut to the head. Spanish doctors also attended and performed CPR, but at 8.30pm Mr Frankland was pronounced dead. The Spanish police are satisfied there was no third party involvement or suspicious circumstances.”
She said the stairs were narrow and steep, but there was a handrail on the right-hand side.
Dr Mahariz Muzafar, a consultant pathologist at Doncaster Royal Infirmary, told the court Ian died as a result of an intracranial hemorrhage, or bleeding inside the skull.
Recording a verdict of accidental death, Assistant Coroner Mark Beresford said: “There is no clear evidence to suggest alcohol had a significant impact on him.
“It is most likely that, in unfamiliar circumstances, he misjudged the steps and lost his balance with tragic and terrible consequences.”