Daily Mail agony aunt who wrote about her depression found dead in sea


Daily Mail advice columnist Sally Brampton who had spoken out publicly about her long-running battle with depression has died after apparently walking into the sea.

The journalist, who wrote a memoir about depression titled Shoot The Damn Dog, was seen going into the sea near her home in St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, friends said.

Described as "smart, tough and stylish", Brampton, 60, was the launch editor of British Elle magazine at the age of just 30 and wrote an advice column for the Daily Mail.

Current British Elle editor-in-chief Lorraine Candy paid tribute, describing her as a "kickass boss" who nurtured new talent with the same enthusiasm as she nurtured her family and friends.

She wrote on its website: "Her legacy is a spirited brand that is as relevant today as it was 31 years ago because there are so many 'Sallys' out there."

Susan Ward Davies, who worked with Brampton on the launch of Elle in 1985, spoke of her as a "dynamic and very inspiring leader".

"Looking back, the Elle girl that Sally invented was such an optimistic role model, such an aspirational character and such a free spirit that you could never imagine the person who created her could have been afflicted with depression," she said.

Guardian journalist and fellow East Sussex resident Kathryn Flett said Brampton - who studied fashion at Central St Martins College of Art and Design - would be remembered by friends and readers for her humour, courage and wisdom.

Sussex Police have not made a formal identification. A police spokesman said a woman's body was pulled ashore by a member of the public after being spotted at around 2.30pm on Tuesday.

An air ambulance landed at Galley Hill in Bexhill-on-Sea, near St Leonards, but she was pronounced dead at the scene. The coroner's office has been informed.

A Sussex Police spokesman said: "There are not thought to be any suspicious circumstances at this time and it is believed that the identity of the woman is known."