Inquests open into mother and daughter found dead after suspected gas explosions
PUBLISHED: 14:14 01 November 2019 | UPDATED: 15:23 01 November 2019
Inquests have been opened into the deaths of a mother and daughter who were found dead after an explosion at their home in a Suffolk village.
The bodies of Pamela Tierney, aged 78, and Julie Tierney, aged 50, who lived in The Street, Lidgate, near Newmarket, were discovered by firefighters after the blast at their bungalow.
Inquests into their deaths were opened and adjourned by area coroner Jacqueline Devonish at Suffolk Coroner's Court in Ipswich on Friday November 1.
The full inquests are due to be heard on February 11, 2020.
The hearing was told how an explosion tore through the property on May 7, starting a fire which caused extensive damage throughout the house.
Fire fighters who responded to the blaze found the bodies in a bedroom at the back of the house.
Both women were pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics. They were identified two weeks later by a forensic odontologist who used their dental records.
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Post mortem examinations carried out for both women on May 12 found that Pamela Tierney died as a result of natural causes and Julie Tierney from inhalation of fire fumes.
A joint investigation run by police and fire service investigators into the cause of the explosion is ongoing but it is suspected it was caused by gas.
Emergency services were called to the property at around midday on May 7 to reports of a significant blaze at the bungalow.
Fire fighters from the four crews who attended reported hearing a series of explosions from the back of the property.
The building suffered significant structural damage and utility companies attended the area to ensure the safety of local residents.
Lidgate Street was closed at the junction of the B1063, along with the turn-off for Cowlinge following the incident for hours while the fire was tackled.
A neighbour who lived close to the bungalow and heard the initial explosion, said: "My daughter heard a bang and about 20 minutes later, I saw smoke billowing out.
"Our immediate neighbour said it was pretty loud. I think there were two explosions."