A WOMAN died after swimming in a river with her son near Skenfrith Castle, the opening of an inquest heard yesterday.

Julie Ann Ball, 34, from the Coventry area, got into difficulties in the Monnow River last month.

When emergency services arrived at the scene, near Monmouth, at 7.16pm on Sunday, July 27 they found a young child upset as he had lost his mother.

Coroner’s officer Geoffrey Ronayne said: “On arrival, officers were informed a six-year-old boy had been found in a state of distress having been unable to locate his mother, who had been swimming with him in the river at that location.

“At 11pm the same night the body of a female was recovered at Skenfrith.

“The body was identified as being that of Julie Ann Ball.”

Pathologist Dr James Harrison at the Royal Gwent Hospital, who carried out a post-mortem examination, delayed giving a cause of death as he awaited the results of histology and toxicology tests.

Senior Coroner for Gwent David Bowen said at Victoria Chambers in Newport: “I’m satisfied as to identification.

“No known person has an objection to the release of the deceased’s body for funeral purposes.”

He adjourned the inquest for two months to allow police investigations to be completed.