THE former head of the Royal Marines was found dead at his home following concerns about his marriage and his career, an inquest opening heard.

Major General Matthew Holmes was discovered hanging at his home in Kingsgate Road, Winchester, on October 2.

An inquest was opened into his death by area coroner Jason Pegg at Winchester Coroner’s Court today (Tuesday).

Mr Pegg said it was suspected that General Holmes had “concerns at the time of his death surrounding his marriage and his service career”.

The coroner said that the Major General's body was formally identified by his wife, Lea.

The inquest was also told that there was an incident at the Major General’s home which police were called to on September 22. No more details were given.

A post mortem carried out by consultant pathologist Dr Adnan Al-Badri gave a cause of death of hanging.

Mr Pegg adjourned the hearing for reports to be provided from various people and organisations including the Major General’s wife, his sister Sarah, along with several from the Royal Marines.

A full inquest will take place on February 10, next year.

The funeral service for Major General Holmes will take place in Winchester Cathedral tomorrow (Wednesday) at 2.15pm.

A memorial page has been created in tribute, to visit the page, go to

Donations in his memory are in support for RMA - The Royal Marines Charity and RNLI.

Major General Holmes – who had served in Northern Ireland, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan – was Commandant General Royal Marines from 2019 until April this year.

He commanded 42 Commando Royal Marines from 2006 to 2008 and was appointed as a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order for his leadership on operations in Afghanistan in 2007.

He was also awarded a CBE in 2019 and has been described as “one of our most senior and highly decorated Royal Marines”.