A CORONER who has served North East Hampshire for three decades is to retire from the ‘best job in the world.’

Andrew Bradley has been a coroner for North East Hampshire for 30 years, having started in 1989, but will be stepping down officially on Sunday.

The now-senior coroner was joined by his wife Helen, son Jamie, daughter Daisy, daughter-in-law Anne and granddaughter Isobel at a party at the Ark Conference Centre on Monday, along with colleagues from across the borough, to celebrate his upcoming retirement.

Mr Bradley, 69, said: “It is the best job in the world, it is fascinating but challenging.

“You get to help people and enable them to move forward, and the process gives them resolutions and answers questions the family might have.”

The role of the coroner is as an independent judicial officer, who is appointed by the local authority to establish the causes of unnatural or violent deaths.

Despite the role dealing with death on a regular basis, this has not affected Mr Bradley.

He added: “There is nothing morbid or depressing about it, finding answers to questions in the interests of justice. The deceased should have a voice and that is my role.”

The coroner’s duties also involve investigating deaths where the cause of death is unknown, or when the person who has died did so in prison, police custody or state detention.

Mr Bradley took over from John Clark on April 1, 1989, while working as a solicitor.

Originally from Lancashire, Mr Bradley now lives in Test Valley.

Mr Bradley now plans to take some more time to relax, including riding his horse, walking his dog and tending to his garden.

Mr Bradley added: “I shall miss all the people in this room that I’ve worked with for many years, but it’s got to the point where I need to stop before I lose sympathy for the people in front of me.”