Stuart Lubbock's dying father to 'rest in peace' after son campaign

Stuart Lubbock’s dying father says he can ‘rest in peace’ after doing ‘the best for my son’ 20 years after he was found dead in Michael Barrymore’s swimming pool

  • Retired Terry Lubbock, 76, revealed in January this year he has terminal cancer
  • He says he can ‘rest in peace’ as the truth about his son’s death ‘will be known’
  • Son Stuart Lubbock died after a party at Michael Barrymore’s home in 2001 

The ailing father of Stuart Lubbock whose body was found in Michael Barrymore’s swimming pool says he can rest in peace as he knows he did all he could for his son.

Stuart Lubbock, 31, died following a party at the entertainer’s then-home in Roydon, Essex, on March 31 2001.

His father, Terry Lubbock, revealed in February he had terminal cancer but has never stopped campaigning for his son.

The 76-year-old says he believes the truth about Stuart’s death will eventually become known and he can rest in peace as a result.

Terry Lubbock revealed in January he has terminal cancer but knows he has ‘done his best’ for his son Stuart

Mr Lubbock, a retired toolmaker from Harlow, Essex, said: ‘I have done my best now for my son.

‘My body is going down, and my mind, and I am starting to forget things.

‘I think the truth will come out. I can rest in peace now.’

In January he had called for a fresh inquest, and said he thought information must now have emerged which justified a fresh inquiry by a coroner.

A coroner recorded an open verdict after an inquest in 2002 and, three years ago, the then-attorney general, Jeremy Wright, refused to give Mr Lubbock the go-ahead to make an application to the High Court for a second inquest.

But Mr Lubbock says a fresh Essex Police appeal, which coincided with the broadcast of a Channel 4 documentary Barrymore: The Body In The Pool, in February 2020, had changed the landscape.

No-one has been charged with any offence in relation to Stuart Lubbock’s death.

Mr Barrymore, now 69, was arrested in 2007 but never charged with any offence.

In March, Mr Barrymore spoke to ITV’s Good Morning Britain programme and described the Channel 4 documentary as “vile and vicious”.

Mr Barrymore said nobody who was at his house on the night of Stuart Lubbock’s death knew what happened.

The photograph handed out by Essex Police of Stuart Lubbock following his death in March 2001

Asked if he had anything fresh to offer the police, he replied: “I honestly wish I did.”

He said he had been “through 20 years of hell”.

Essex Police have said their investigation is continuing.

In March, police arrested a 50-year-old man on suspicion of the murder and indecent assault of Stuart Lubbock. The man, who was not named by police, was subsequently released under investigation.

Police say they have prepared a file for consideration by the Crown Prosecution Service following a “substantial and detailed investigation”.

Stuart was found floating in Mr Barrymore’s swimming pool but nobody has been brought to justice for causing his death.

Detectives believe that Mr Lubbock may also have been abused.

A post-mortem examination showed Mr Lubbock had suffered severe internal injuries which suggested he had been sexually assaulted.

Michael Barrymore said in March he has been through ’20 years of hell’ since Stuart’s death

Alcohol, ecstasy and cocaine were found in his bloodstream.

The coroner recorded an open verdict.

Stuart Lubbock’s death shocked Britain and ended Michael Barrymore’s TV career overnight. The star, who made millions as one of the UK’s top TV personalities of the 1980s and 1990s, has always denied playing any part in his suspected murder.

The timeline of events following Stuart Lubbock’s death

2001

March 31: Mr Lubbock, 31, of Harlow, Essex, is found dead at Barrymore’s home in nearby Roydon following a party. The entertainer is questioned by police.

October: Barrymore accepts an official caution for drugs offences and allowing his home to be used for smoking cannabis. No further charges are brought.

2002

September: An inquest in Epping, Essex, records an open verdict on Mr Lubbock’s death. Medical experts tell the hearing that he had suffered severe internal injuries, suggesting he may have been the victim of a serious sexual assault. Alcohol, cocaine and Ecstasy were also found in his system. ITV also announces that it has ‘no plans’ to commission any further shows from the star.

2003

September: Barrymore abandons a comeback attempt after the first three nights of his one-man show in London receive bad reviews.

December: Amid reports that he has received a £1.4 million tax bill, he leaves the UK to live in New Zealand with his long-term partner Shaun Davis.

2004

May: Barrymore announces that he has filed for voluntary bankruptcy in the UK because of the ‘unexpected’ tax demand.

2006

January: Barrymore returns to screens in the UK as a Celebrity Big Brother housemate.

He remains in the house for three weeks and is runner-up in the final poll, leading to speculation that his showbusiness career will be revived.

After emerging from the house, Barrymore holds a tearful two-hour meeting with Mr Lubbock’s father Terry in a London hotel.

Mr Lubbock reportedly tells the entertainer he does not hold him ‘responsible’ for what happened. Barrymore is said to have responded: ‘It haunts me every day.’

February: Mr Lubbock’s family is blocked from launching a private prosecution against the celebrity.

A district judge in Southend, Essex, rules there is insufficient evidence for a hearing on six offences – four related to the misuse of drugs, one alleging drunk and disorderly behaviour and one alleging assault.

April: Police announce that they are reviewing Mr Lubbock’s death as part of ‘routine’ procedure.

December: Essex Police begin a new inquiry into Mr Lubbock’s death. 

2007

March: Police issue a new appeal for information on the sixth anniversary of Mr Lubbock’s death.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) also launches an inquiry into the original police investigation surrounding Mr Lubbock’s death.

June: Barrymore and two other men are arrested and questioned on suspicion of seriously sexually assaulting and murdering Mr Lubbock.

They are later released without charge.

2009

February: The IPCC publishes the findings of a review of the police investigation into Mr Lubbock’s death, including that officers missed crucial evidence and did not ensure vital forensic tests were completed until six years later.

2010

March: Police launch a fresh appeal for information over the death.

2011

December: Barrymore admits cocaine possession and is fined £780.

2016

December: Barrymore lodges an appeal for £2.5 million damages after suing police who arrested him over Mr Lubbock’s death.

2017

August: A High Court judge rules Barrymore is entitled to ‘more than nominal’ damages against Essex Police over the wrongful arrest which he said destroyed his career.

2018

December: The Court of Appeal says Barrymore ‘is entitled to nominal damages only’, following an appeal by the police.

2020

February: A Channel 4 documentary about Mr Lubbock’s death prompts Barrymore to issue a fresh denial of any wrongdoing, saying: ‘I have had nothing to do with this whatsoever and yet I keep getting bashed and bullied by the media.’

2021

March: Terry Lubbock hints at the possibility of fresh evidence emerging, telling PA: ‘I wouldn’t be surprised if someone cracks soon under all this pressure and decides to get it off their chest once and for all.’

On March 17, Essex Police announces a 50-year-old man has been arrested in Cheshire in connection with Mr Lubbock’s murder and indecent assault. The man, who was not named by police, was subsequently released under investigation.

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