Who we are

dr-elizabeth-earlandElizabeth Earland is the HM Senior Coroner for Exeter and Greater Devon.

She studied Medicine at the University of Bristol and qualified as a doctor in 1972. Elizabeth worked mainly as an anaesthetist but also in General Practice in the UK and Abu Dhabi before a career change into hotel ownership in 1978 whilst bringing up her two sons.

After moving to Exeter in 1982, Elizabeth returned to medicine, working as a GP in Exmouth and as an anaesthetist at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital.

After leaving the NHS in 1992, Elizabeth studied at the University of Exeter, gaining a Postgraduate Diploma in Law and went on to study the Postgraduate Legal Practice Course at the University of the West of England in 1994. She became a solicitor specialising in clinical negligence and litigation in 1996.

Elizabeth became HM Assistant Deputy Coroner for the County of Devon (Exeter and East) in 1998; HM Deputy Coroner for the County of Devon (now Exeter and Greater Devon) in 1999; and after leaving private practice in 2001, became HM Coroner for the County of Devon (Exeter and Greater Devon) in 2003.

John Tomalin is the HM Deputy Coroner for Exeter and Greater Devon.

John studied Law at Kingston University qualifying as a solicitor in June 1981.  Initially John practiced as a litigation solicitor, dealing with both civil and criminal work, including personal injury claims, negligence actions, contractual disputes and family law.

In 1986 John moved from his firm’s litigation department to become partner in charge of the private client department at Seldons LLP in Bideford, North Devon, advising families on will drafting and tax planning, powers of attorney and estate administration.  John is a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners as well as a member of the Solicitors for the Elderly Group.

John was appointed HM Assistant Coroner for the County of Devon (Exeter and Greater Devon) in 2008 and Deputy to the Senior Coroner in 2013.

John has lived in North Devon for many years with his wife and family.

Lydia Brown

Lydia Brown is HM Assistant Coroner for Exeter and Greater Devon.

Lydia studied law at Manchester University and completed Law Society Finals in 1992, before practising as a solicitor specialising in Clinical Negligence for over 10 years.

A move to Exmoor also prompted a brief career change to own a busy restaurant for 2 years.

Lydia then started working with the NHS in-house legal team in Leicester University Hospital Trust and was appointed HM Assistant Coroner in Leicester in 2010 and in addition as HM Assistant Coroner for Exeter and Greater Devon in 2012.

She now divides her time between these 2 areas, and in any remaining spare time is a keen dog walker, Duke of Edinburgh Award Leader and mother of two daughters.

Luisa Nicholson is HM Assistant Coroner for Exeter and Greater Devon.

Luisa studied law in Birmingham before joining West Midlands Police Force.

She decided to become a solicitor and left the police service in order to complete her legal training in Exeter and qualified with a firm in Barnstaple in 2003.

She moved to south Devon after qualification and in 2012 set up her own practice specialising in private client matters (wills, probate, estate administration) and older clients’ issues.

Luisa was appointed H M Assistant Coroner for Exeter and Greater Devon in 2013. She has a particular interest in emergency planning and disaster victim identification.