A JURY in the murder trial of a Kidderminster man has retired to consider its verdict.

Henry Jones, aged 23, has been on trial for two weeks for the murder of his housemate 55-year-old Mark Beresford on March 24 this year at the house they rented in Offmore Road, Kidderminster.

They had been sharing the house and the bills for three months but Jones, a former Stourport High School student, had lost his job at Malvern Collections in Bewdley in March and Mr Beresford thought he would not be able to pay his way.

Worcester Crown Court heard Mr Beresford had discovered Jones was around £4,000 in debt and had told the landlord.

Mr Beresford returned home on the evening of March 24 with his usual microwave meal and four cans of beer and there was an argument.

Jones told the jury Mr Beresford threw a punch at him in the living room of the house and he punched him back, knocking him down and kicking him while he was on the floor.

Mr Beresford said "enough" and went into the kitchen. Jones followed and saw him picking up a kitchen knife, Timothy Raggatt, QC, told the jury in his closing remarks.

Jones had a "momentary loss of control" and made the split second decision to pick up an 18 inch (47cms) long metal bar from a toolbox and hit Mr Beresford on the back of the head, Mr Raggatt told the jury.

He fell and never regained consciousness. He died in hospital the following night from a brain injury caused by a fractured skull.

Jones admits causing the death of Mr Beresford but has denied any intention to murder or to cause him serious harm.

Jonas Hankin, QC, for the prosecution, told the jury, Mr Beresford had been "bludgeoned" with the metal bar.

The trial continues.