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Briton Roger Stotesbury Dies After Falling From Indian Temple During 'Middled-Aged Gap Year'

He and his wife were on the final leg of their trip.

14/10/2017 13:53 BST | Updated 19/10/2017 17:16 BST

A British man on the final leg of a so-called “middle-aged gap year” with his wife has fallen to his death in India.

Roger Stotesbury fell roughly 30ft on Friday at a temple in Orchha, about 160 miles south of the Taj Mahal.

Press Association
Roger Stotesbury and his wife Hilary

Police initially said he had been trying to take a selfie but the family later denied this. 

The Times of India said Stotesbury, from Oxford, was “standing almost on the edge of a wall on the second floor of the temple” when he fell, the Press Association reports.

The documentary-maker, a father-of-two who said he wanted to “die young as late as possible”, was in the last few weeks of his travels around the world with his wife Hilary.

A Foreign Office spokesman said: “We are providing assistance to the family of a British man following his tragic death in India on October 13.

“Our thoughts are with the family at this sad time.”

Writing on their blog, ourmiddleagedgapyear.wordpress.com, the couple said they were renting out their home and trying to live on £100 a day.

They said: “We are Hilary and Roger a married couple from England/Scotland who are in their mid fifties.

“Hilary’s motto is ‘just do it’ whilst Roger’s is ‘to die young as late as possible’.

“We took the view that on your deathbed you never wish you’d spent more time in the office.

“We’ve seen our two kids off into the wider world and we have no more caring responsibilities for our parents.

“So we thought now is the time to take a gap year and travel whilst we still have the health and energy. After all you only live once.”

The couple started with a two-month tour of Italy before taking in south and north America, Australia, and several Asian countries. India was intended to be their final stop, according to the blog.

Describing their motivations for the project, they said: “Rather than drift into comfortable retirement we wanted to do something different.

“Also there are many parts of the world we want to see and we figured continual travel would be more of a switch off and better value for money.

“One aim is to experience countries as travellers rather than time-conscious tourists.

“We had kids soon after we married so hadn’t travelled much as a couple and wanted to experience living abroad for an extended time.”

The couple posted pictures of their visit to the Taj Mahal on their website, a day before the tragedy.