WEB UPDATE: Fire death remains a mystery

MYSTERY surrounds the cause of a fire in which a 92-year-old Little Paxton man died. John Glyndwr Howells was found in his bedroom during the blaze, which happened at his home in Gordon Road on April 30. Firefighters rescued Mr Howells from his burning

MYSTERY surrounds the cause of a fire in which a 92-year-old Little Paxton man died.

John Glyndwr Howells was found in his bedroom during the blaze, which happened at his home in Gordon Road on April 30.

Firefighters rescued Mr Howells from his burning house and attempted to resuscitate him but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

An inquest held at Huntingdon Law Courts on Friday (September 19) heard how he had collapsed behind his bedroom door while attempting to escape.

Fireman Andrew Tucker said: "It is believed Mr Howells had been trying to get out of the room but had been overcome by fumes and collapsed."

A post-mortem examination showed Mr Howells, who suffered from poor eyesight and lived alone, had died of smoke inhalation.

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An investigated in to the fire revealed it had started on Mr Howells' bed but officers said they had no idea what had caused it.

Mr Tucker said all electric items in the room had been tested and were not found to be faulty. He said carpets and floorboards had been removed in the search for evidence but no matches, candles or an electric blanket had been found.

He added: "It comes down to some form of human activity on behalf of the occupant".

But the mystery continued as the inquest heard how Mr Howells did not smoke and had not been found with any burns on his hands.

Furthermore, police said they were no signs that anyone else had been inside the house at the time of the blaze and no evidence had been found to suggest Mr Howells wanted to take his own life.

In recording a verdict of accidental death, coroner David Morris, said: "With all the will in the world on occasions there are times when we can not come up with a final explanation. There is no explanation as to how or why this fire started.

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