THE husband of a scandal-hit West Somerset doctor took his own life in woodland near their home, an inquest has heard.

Former police officer Andrew Duncan married Williton GP Clare Nettleton after she made national newspaper headlines for being sacked for having affairs with patients.

Dr Nettleton, now aged 54, and still living in West Somerset, was branded by the media as the ‘real Doctor Foster’ after it was said she had more flings than the fictional BBC character.

NHS Somerset suspended her in 2015 after admitting affairs with two patients, for one of whom she left her husband.

The new relationship lasted six months before she started an affair with police officer Andrew Duncan, from Forfar, Scotland, who left his wife and two children for Dr Nettleton, who also has two children, and they were married in 2018.

The inquest heard Mr Duncan, aged 51, who worked as a funeral director, hanged himself in woodland not far from their home in Dunster.

Somerset Senior Coroner Samantha Marsh concluded Mr Duncan’s death last February was ‘suicide’.

Dr Nettleton launched an online appeal in Mr Duncan’s name to support the Body & Soul charity which works with people who suffered adversity in childhood, which raised £3,958.

She said Mr Duncan was ‘the kindest man, wonderful friend, and inspirational stepfather to my two children’.

“I had the best times with Andy - so much fun, deep love, and irreverent humour. We had many future plans,” she said.

“He was fastidious and conscientious - determined to help people become the best versions of themselves. This advocacy for others was central to his life.”

However, when he was 15 he lost his mother to cancer and later his sister to suicide before his father moved abroad.

She said: “These dreadful traumas shaped his life’s work of advocacy for others, but was no substitute for healing the vulnerable young boy who believed at some level he was culpable for these terrible losses.

“Andy and I shared fun, laughter, and so much love - but he was unable to escape the demons from his childhood loss.”