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Chef killed after car hits tree

PUBLISHED: 12:16 20 December 2008 | UPDATED: 22:04 05 July 2010

A TALENTED chef died after his car collided with a tree on a country road in north Suffolk, an inquest has heard.

Maxwell Dougal, of Dairy Hill in Halesworth, was driving along the A144 on September 24 when his car hit a tree about a quarter of a mile north of Bramfield village.

A TALENTED chef died after his car collided with a tree on a country road in north Suffolk, an inquest has heard.

Maxwell Dougal, of Dairy Hill in Halesworth, was driving along the A144 on September 24 when his car hit a tree about a quarter of a mile north of Bramfield village.

The Lowestoft inquest heard yesterday that the 33-year-old set out in his red Toyota Yaris at about 9.30am and was seen driving along the Halesworth to Bramfield Road towards the A12.

A police investigation found that at about 9.40am, Mr Dougal's car mounted the near side verge at a shallow angle and collided with a tree. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Mr Dougal, who had been with wife Melissa for 14 years, worked as head chef at the award-winning Orford Castle and Crown, which is owned by television presenter Ruth Watson.

He had worked at the Castle and Crown for six years and previously worked for Mrs Watson, presenter of television series The Hotel Inspector, at the Fox and Goose, in Fressingfield.

Shortly after his death, a statement released by his family said: “Max was loving and fun.

“No one ever had a bad word to say about him. He was loved by everyone that knew him. He loved the outdoor life and his two dogs.”

Suffolk coroner Peter Dean yesterday recorded a verdict of accidental death.

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