A MAN saddled with gambling debts failed in his suicide attempt but caused £30,000 of damage to a house, Barnsley Magistrates' Court was told.

Andrew Hart, 42, decided to hang himself and took a rope into a bedroom of a half-built home at Bank Street, Worsbrough Common.

He drank seven cans of Stella, took some pills and had a small amount of cocaine to give himself courage, said Gerard Casey, defending.

But Hart was in such a state that he could not put his head in the noose.

Hart, a window fitter, decided to collect bits of a plastic pipe, set them on fire and inhale the fumes, the court heard.

"The house set ablaze as well," said Mr Casey. "It seems the heat was too intense for someone who was willing to die - Mr Hart jumped out the window of the house and broke his ankle.

"Mr Hart had debt caused by gambling problems. He is attending Gamblers' Anonymous and is getting medical help.

"He is well known to Glenn Freeman, a builder who owned the house, and had done work for him in the past."

Mr Casey added that it will be unlikely that Hart will be jailed as he did not commit a 'blatant and crude' offence.

Jessica Southcote-Want, prosecuting, said a witness spoke to Hart before his suicide attempt. The witness said Hart looked 'weary and sad'.

Hart turned up later on the witness's doorstep with his hands covered in blood and collapsed.

Miss Southcote-Want added: "Mr Hart had got into debt and tried to commit suicide."

Hart, of Hall Farm Drive, Thurnscoe, admitted arson. He will be sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court on July 18 and was granted unconditional bail.