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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 February, 2004, 09:54 GMT
Porton Down review opens
Ronald Maddison
Mr Maddison thought he was helping to cure the common cold
A pre-inquest review hearing was due to take place on Thursday into the death of a serviceman involved in chemical tests at Porton Down.

Ronald Maddison, a Swindon-based RAF engineer, originally from Consett, County Durham, died after being exposed to the Sarin nerve agent in May 1953.

He was one of many human volunteers involved in tests from 1939 to 1989.

Mr Maddison was 20 when he took part in what he thought was an experiment to find a cure for the common cold in May 1953.

The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Woolf, quashed the original inquest verdict of death by misadventure last year and ordered a second inquest to be opened.

The original inquest was held in secret "for reasons of national security".

Thursday's review was due to take place, starting at 1000 GMT, at Trowbridge Magistrates' Court in Wiltshire.

Porton Down death inquest delayed
07 Nov 03  |  Wiltshire
Date set for nerve gas inquest
28 Oct 03  |  Wiltshire
Nerve gas inquest to be re-opened
18 Nov 02  |  England
MoD 'will not oppose' new inquest
29 Jul 02  |  England

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