A dying British couple have ended their lives together at a voluntary euthanasia clinic in Switzerland, their family said.

Peter and Penelope Duff, from Bath in Somerset, died at the Dignitas clinic in Zurich on February 27.

Retired businessmen1 Mr Duff, 80, a patron of the Bath Festival, was suffering from colon2 and liver cancer.

His 70-year-old wife had been suffering from another rare form of the disease, Gist (gastrointestinal stromal tumour) since 1992.

A family statement said: "Peter and Penny Duff passed away peacefully together in Zurich after a long battle against their terminal cancer on February 27.

"Penny had fought3 a rare cancer, Gist, since 1992 and Peter's colon cancer had spread to his liver4.

"Their decision in no way reflected on the wonderful and humbling care they have received from their consultant5, doctors and nurses, for which the family, and they, were so appreciative."

Mr Duff was secretary-general of the Wine Guild of the United Kingdom from 1984 to 1989.

He had been chairman of Alcohol In Moderation since March 2001.

A statement6 released by Bath Festival said of the Duffs: "They were great patrons of the arts who supported our festivals for many years, although their chief involvement was with music."

Dignitas was founded in 1998 by Swiss lawyer Ludwig Minelli, who runs it as a non-profit organisation.

UK Couple End Their Lives At Suicide Clinic

1    Businessman?
2    côlon
3    Combattu (to fight)
4    S'est propagé à son foie
5    I don't how to translate it in this context
6    Déclaration – I always have problem with this common word...