21/03/2013 15:34 GMT | Updated 21/03/2013 15:46 GMT

Lucy Meadows, Primary School Teacher, Found Dead After Beginning New Term As Woman

A primary school teacher who began a new term as a woman after transitioning from male to female has been found dead.

Pupils at St Mary Magdalen's C of E Primary School in Accrington, Lancashire, were told in December that Nathan Upton should be addressed as Miss Meadows after Christmas break.

A letter to parents read: "Mr Upton has recently made a significant change in his life and will be transitioning to live as a woman. After the Christmas break, she will return to work as Miss Meadows."

The body of Miss Meadows, 32, was found at a house in Accrington on Tuesday. Police have said there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding her death.

Concerns from some parents were reported in the media at the time but Miss Meadows had thanked school governors and staff for their support when she announced her plans to return dressed as a woman in January.

Trans Media Watch, a charity dedicated to improving media coverage of trans and intersex issues posted the following tweet:

It added that it had contacted teachers' unions at the time to share its concerns about the harm such stories can do to teachers and pupils.

Jennie Kermode, Chair of Trans Media Watch, said “Transition brings its own stresses and strains. Undoubtably prurient tabloid coverage will only have added to them. We are deeply saddened to hear this news.”

Helen Belcher Director of the charity, added: |Many trans people have reported problems following unwanted press exposure, something that Lord Justice Leveson identified in his report. Lucy’s national exposure, simply for deciding to be herself, must have amplified those problems."

A spokeswoman for Lancashire Police said: "At 4.45pm on Tuesday, police were called by the ambulance service to a report of a sudden death at an address on Ramsbottom Street in Accrington.

"On arrival they found the body of a 32-year-old woman. There are no suspicious circumstances and a file will be prepared and passed to the coroner."

In a statement on the school website, head teacher Karen Hardman said: "It is with great sadness that I have to inform you of the death of Miss Lucy Meadows.

"Our staff will be working closely with bereavement teams and are here to offer the children and yourselves any support in any way we can."

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