A Hampshire dad was killed as he cycled home from a party held at a pub run by his aunt, an inquest was told.

Father of five Ashley Cron was riding along a dark country lane at around 3am when his bike left the road and plunged into a ditch.

Mr Cron, of Redwood Gardens in Totton, suffered a fatal head injury after being thrown over the handlebars.

Toxicology tests carried out on his body showed he was more than three times the drink-drive limit, Winchester Coroner's Court was told.

Daily Echo: The inquest into Mr Cron's death was held at Winchester Coroner's CourtThe inquest into Mr Cron's death was held at Winchester Coroner's Court (Image: Newsquest.)

The 37-year-old granite technician had been to the Compass Inn in Winsor Road, Winsor, where his aunt, Victoria Goulding, was holding a party to celebrate her birthday.

He left at around 2.30am and was cycling along Tatchbury Lane in Netley Marsh when the accident happened on November 12, 2022.

READ MORE: Family pays tribute to 'amazing' dad who died in accident at Tatchbury Lane

In a written statement submitted to the inquest, Ms Goulding said her nephew was a "very social" person who never held a grudge.

She added: "Everyone liked him. He was a happy-go-lucky man who was always smiling."

Referring to the party Ms Goulding said: "If I'd had any concerns about him being too drunk to ride home I would never have let him leave."

Daily Echo: Several members of Mr Cron's family attended the inquest at Winchester Coroner's CourtSeveral members of Mr Cron's family attended the inquest at Winchester Coroner's Court (Image: Newsquest.)

The inquest heard that two people were driving along Tatchbury Lane at around 7.45am when they saw Mr Cron's body.

A post-mortem examination showed he died from a head injury and alcohol intoxication.

Accident investigator Simon Lewis said Mr Cron was travelling at about 20mph when he failed to negotiate a slight bend.

He added that the cyclist's front light was "not fit for purpose".

Senior coroner Christopher Wilkinson said he was satisfied there was no third-party involvement in Mr Cron's death.

READ MORE: Fundraiser for family of Netley Marsh crash victim Ashley Cron 

He added: "It was an extremely dark lane and it's evident that the bike's light was not working effectively, if at all.

"Ash may have been familiar with the route, but every twist and turn may not have been immediately apparent to him. The biggest contributory factor is that he was 3.4 times the drink-drive limit."

Mr Wllkinson recorded a conclusion of accidental death and expressed his condolences to Mr Cron's family.

Referring to the party the coroner added: "He had a fantastic time with friends and family. Ash was a family-orientated man who cared immensely for his children and partner."

Following his death, a fundraiser for the family netted £5,000 - twice its initial target.