A "lively and loving" mum tragically died after going to a music festival in which drugs were taken, an inquest has heard.

Stephanie Thorpe, of Presto Street, Farnworth, died aged 32 on Sunday, June 25 after attending the Restricted Forest music festival at Blackburn's Witton Park.

At Preston Coroners' Court, her partner Carl Pendlebury said he was selling tickets at the festival, and they decided to go, as they always did, with a group of around 50 friends on June 24.

Carl described devoted mum and teacher Stephanie as "very lively and loving" and someone who enjoyed dancing and socialising.

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Carl said: "We met up at the Post Office Inn in Farnworth.

"I saw Stephanie's cousin Laura and she said they were going to St Gregory's Social Club, and asked if I wanted to come for a drink.

"Everyone was chatting, and I wasn't with her 100 per cent, but she was talking to her friends.

"I think she had a couple of drinks at home while I went out to get breakfast, and she said she was fine and didn't want breakfast."

Carl says that he believes she had some cocaine at the pub, and had some ecstasy on the way to the festival on the coach to "enhance" her experience at the festival.

He says he also had some, and believes that others would have also taken ecstasy as well, and that "from what he knows" no one else had any adverse effects.

Carl said: "We got to the festival around 1.30pm to 1.45pm, and we both went to the VIP area and had a drink and went to the toilet.

"I went one way and she went the other way with her friends."

Carl next saw Stephanie at around 5pm on the hill area in the forest, and says she "seemed fine" but she later started sweating and shaking.

However, it was a particularly hot day.

Carl added: "Whenever she was dancing she sweated, and she was someone who would get quite hot.

The Bolton News: "At about 5.30pm she started to deteriorate and her lips started going blue.

"We thought she had taken some more ecstasy because someone said they had seen her take something, but I hadn't seen her take it."

Childhood friend Darcy Lomax, who also went to the festival, first saw Stephanie when she got on the coach, and says that Stephanie was "fine" then, and just "dancing about".

Once the group arrived, the friends split off into different groups.

The next time Darcy saw her was when they were on the hill, and Stephanie put her head on Darcy's knee after saying she felt "very hot" at around 5.45pm.

She said: "I brought two bottles at the bar and she had her own water.

"At about 4pm the bar ran out of water, and Stephanie had some of my water at that point.

"At around 5.45pm she started to complain of being very hot, and she put her head on my knee and had a minute.

The Bolton News: Stephanie Thorpe with her son Alfie and partner CarlStephanie Thorpe with her son Alfie and partner Carl (Image: Public)"I thought she was just resting and having some water.

"Most of us were under the trees because it was very hot.

"We had been dancing and she was fanning herself with the fan she brought.

"I hadn't been with her until I saw her at the bar, so I don't know about the ecstasy, and I don't know about anyone else taking ecstasy. 

"I just know she wasn't all there."

Stephanie's friend Jenna Ratcliffe, who is also a sister practitioner, also went to the festival, says that Stephanie said she was a bit tired but was "excited" about the day.

She said that Stephanie was shaking when she asked Jenna to take a picture, and she had not had anything to eat at that point.

Jenna next saw Stephanie at 5pm and she with everyone dancing together and "seemed fine".

She said: "I went off and came back, and when I came back I said 'something is not right.

"She was floppy and her eyes were flickering.

The Bolton News: Stephanie Thorpe with mum Susan Dutton, and sisters Kelly and CherieStephanie Thorpe with mum Susan Dutton, and sisters Kelly and Cherie (Image: Public)"I ran to the medical tent, which was signposted."

A paramedic came to help with a bag of equipment, and he asked Darcy to go and get a chair for Stephanie, but she had been taken into the medical tent.

At this point Stephanie was "not responsive" when people called her name, and she was "deteriorating".

Stephanie had a cannula attached to one of her arms and was given some saline, and she was "more conscious" at this point.

Paramedic Claire Watts was initially at Royal Blackburn Hospital when she got a call from paramedic Tom Wildman, who was at the festival.

With them both working the festival, Mr Wildman asked Ms Watts to put her blue lights on and come to collect Stephanie, and her temperature was recorded as "extremely high".

And although there was a slight delay in taking Stephanie to the hospital, the court heard that this “would not have made a difference”.

Toxicologist Dr Stephanie Martin undertook an examination of blood samples that were taken at the hospital.

Dr Martin said: "In this case we found inactive breakdown products of cocaine and active breakdowns of cocaine, but no cocaine itself.

The Bolton News: Stephanie with best friend Holly Mclaughlin and another close friendStephanie with best friend Holly Mclaughlin and another close friend (Image: Public)"She may have taken it in the hours before she was admitted to hospital.

"Ecstasy was present in her blood, but I can't give any timings.

"It's in the range where we see multiple organ failure or serotonin syndrome, which affects the mood, which is why some people take MDMA and recreational drugs.

"But unfortunately there is a high chance the body can't regulate its own body temperature.

"We also saw ketamine breakdown components, but not ketamine itself, and it is probably unlikely that this and the cocaine breakdown contributed directly to her death.

"It's the level of ecstasy that is the critical problem in this case."

Stephanie was not a regular drug user, and senior coroner Dr James Adeley emphasised this was “not a case of any form of addiction”, but an “enhanced way” of experiencing certain events, typical amongst festival goers.

He also said that there was no indication from the evidence, that Stephanie was doing anything other than “enjoying herself” at the festival.

The Bolton News: Stephanie Thorpe with her son Alfie and partner CarlStephanie Thorpe with her son Alfie and partner Carl (Image: Public)Dr Adeley says that the weather and activities can also have an effect on somebody when taking this drug.

The medical cause of death was given as multiple organ failure due to the toxic affects of MDMA.

Dr Adeley recorded Stephanie's death at the hospital as accidental.

He said: “I am sorry you are attending court in these circumstances.

“We have heard that she was the life and soul of the party, and she enjoyed dancing, and having a good time.

“In terms of Stephanie’s relationship with drugs, this was not a case of any form of addiction.

“This is a form of enhanced enjoyment and experience.

“Dr Mark Clayton (an expert witness in the inquest) said that data from America showed that nine out of 10 festival goers use these type of drugs and it’s part of the culture, and I don’t think it is different for this country.

“Dr Clayton also shared that the strength of these has increased over the past few years, and there is no way to tell the strength of the tablet you are taking.

“There is no evidence that Stephanie has taken ketamine.

“The ketamine she ingested is added to the tablet because it can provide similar effects.

“The cocaine taken earlier in the day was taken too far away to be of concern, and I discount this.

“Anyone taking these tablets can not judge how much is too much.

“Dehydration can occur because of not drinking enough or because you are sweating, which makes you more likely to suffer from increases in concentration in your blood or to suffer from hypoxia.

“This is a situation where a young woman has taken a tablet that she doesn’t know the strength of, and its combination with a range of things like the heat of the day.

“I wish you all well for the future, and if you attend a festival please be careful.”

Dr Adeley says that he will be putting a letter together to organisations across Lancashire to try and make festivals safer in terms of provisions such as water.

He has already spoken to the local authorities.

If you have a story and something you would like to highlight in the community, please email me at jasmine.jackson@newsquest.co.uk or DM me on Twitter @JournoJasmine.