Floral tributes have been left at a Hartlepool home where a woman’s body was found following a fire.
Police are continuing investigations after the body of an elderly woman was found in Westbourne Road following a house fire.
Officers are treating the death as suspicious and enquiries are ongoing.
The woman was found at around 8.25am yesterday. A post mortem examination was due to be carried out yesterday.
The road was cordoned off by police as crews from Hartlepool Stranton fire station tackled the blaze.
Police had blocked access to the road and the ambulance service was also in attendance.
It was re-opened yesterday but has been cordoned off again today.
Residents of the street spoke of their shock.
Kevin Collier, who has lived in the street for about 30 years, said: “It’s very surprising to see anything like this happen on this street.
“I’ve never known there to be any problems in all the time I’ve lived here.
“The neighbours are all lovely, and this is just not something you’d think would occur.
“I had been out, but when I came back home, the street was full of police, forensics, the fire service and ambulances.
“You don’t even normally see the police here, never mind a huge presence like there was for this.
“It was definitely a shock to the system for all of us.”
Another resident of the road, who did not wish to be named, said: “Nothing like this ever happens in this area.
“It’s very quiet and peaceful, so it’s shocking to see that someone has died.
“It’s a tragedy, and it certainly seemed to be treated as a major incident.
“There were so many police officers, as well as members of the forensics team and the fire service.
“To know that someone has lost their life is so upsetting, especially in a street as friendly as this.”
Forensic investigators were on scene.
Anyone who may have information regarding the fire or anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious in the area of Westbourne Road this morning is asked to contact Cleveland Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or at www.crimestoppers-uk.org