A JURY has retired to consider its findings in the inquest of an elderly hospital patient who died after drinking Flash floor cleaner left in a water jug by her bedside.

Joan Blaber, who was born in Tidworth, died six days after drinking the fluid at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton last year.

The 85-year-old, from Lewes, East Sussex, was admitted with a minor stroke on August 22 but her condition worsened after the incident on September 17 and she died on September 23.

The jury of six women and three men left Brighton and Hove Coroner's Court at 1.15pm on Tuesday and were told to begin their deliberations after a short break.

Sitting at the Jury's Inn hotel near Brighton Station, senior coroner Veronica Hamilton-Deeley described Mrs Blaber as an "amazingly stoical lady" and told the jury they "must not flinch" from the evidence even if it was difficult to hear.

She added: "Your task is slightly more mysterious. It's more mysterious because whilst we know the cause of Joan's death, we don't know how it came about."