Inquests into the deaths of four men who died on a stretch of railway between Purley Oaks and Purley were held last week.

Croydon Coroner's Court heard last Tuesday that on separate occasions between September 2005 and May this year three men killed themselves and another died after he put his head on a live line.

However, the coroner said he did not believe the railway authorities could be expected to do more to reduce any further fatalities.

After the hearings Croydon coroner Dr Roy Palmer said: "All four deaths were on or from platforms to which the public have access.

"In only one case was there a trespass on to railway tracks, but that was off the end of a platform to which the public had access. I do not believe that the railway authorities could really be expected to do more."

James Oliver, 22, put his head on the live rail at Purley station and electrocuted himself on September 21 last year - despite being chased along the tracks by workmen and railway staff who desperately tried to stop him.

Mr Oliver had been a patient at Bethlem Royal Hospital but was given accommodation in Lennard Road, West Croydon, by social services, and had stopped taking his medication. Dr Palmer recorded an open verdict and said he was not satisfied Mr Oliver intended to kill himself.

Depressed college lecturer Peter Bosley, 57, jumped in front of a 70 mile-an-hour express train as it hurtled through Purley Oaks station on March 17.

A psychiatrist revealed how Mr Bosley, from South Croydon, had become more depressed after his job applications were turned down. He was a voluntary patient at Bethlem Royal Hospital but was discharged in February.

Richard Wadman, 51, from Engadine Close in Addiscombe, jumped in front of a train travelling at up to 90 miles and hour through Purley station on April 6. The inquest heard how Mr Wadman had unfounded concerns about his finances.

And last week the Croydon Guardian reported how 27-year-old teacher Oliver Winrow, from Bisenden Road in Addiscombe, lay over the platform in the path of an express train on May 20.

In these three inquests Dr Palmer recorded suicide verdicts.

A spokesman for Network Rail said: "Any life lost on the railway is a tragedy and we offer our condolences to the families and friends of anyone killed on the railway lines, whether the death was accidental or intentional.

"We would emphasise to anyone thinking of trespassing on railway lines that they can be a very dangerous place."