Tag Archives: died

Killer Fog

Thousands are estimated to have died after a thick polluted fog engulfed London for four days in December 1952.

The smog was so thick that visibility was just one metre.

Those with respiratory conditions, the young and the old were most vulnerable.

In response, the government passed the Clean Air Act to reduce the use of smoky fuels.

Witness speaks to Dr Brian Commins, who worked for the Air Pollution Unit set up at St. Bartholomew’s hospital in London in the 1950s.

Witness: The stories of our times told by the people who were there.


Salford fire: Family of four killed speak of ‘nightmare’

The relatives of four children who died in a house fire in Salford say their mother still doesn’t know that they’re dead.

Demi Pearson, 15, and siblings Brandon, eight, and Lacie, seven, died in the blaze in Walkden on Monday. Lia, three, died in hospital on Wednesday.

Their mother, Michelle, 35, is in hospital in a coma.

Walkden fire deaths family ‘won’t be broken’

Composite imageImage copyright Police handout
Image caption Lia, Demi, Brandon and Lacie died following Monday’s fire, while their mum Michelle remains in a coma

The aunt of four children who died in a house fire in Salford says the family is trying to cope with their grief but “nothing will ever break us”.

Demi Pearson, 15, and siblings Brandon, eight, and Lacie, seven, died in the blaze in Walkden on Monday. Lia, three, died in hospital on Wednesday.

Claire Pearson said: “What’s happened is tragic but it won’t separate this family. We are all very close.”

Her sister and the children’s mother, Michelle, 35, is in hospital in a coma.

The family said they were “dreading the day” they have to tell her “the awful news about her babies”.

Ms Pearson says her sister is “an amazing woman” and the house on Jackson Street “was like a youth club with the amount of kids” who would visit.

“She was such a mother to everybody else’s kids as well as her own,” she said.

“When it was family time they’d all cuddle up on the couch together, they were so close.

“Lacie was a little diva, she didn’t stop dancing. Lia was obsessed with Peppa Pig. Brandon and Lacie were so close.”

Image caption Claire Pearson said: “What’s happened is tragic but it won’t separate this family.”

Speaking of how the family feels, she said: “You can’t feel pain, you can’t feel grief, you can’t feel anything, you’re so numb inside, it’s too much to take in.”

Mike Pearson, Michelle’s father, said: “The kids were just like any other kids. They were very supportive, very independent, but very tightly-knit.

“Demi was a little star. She’d been a diabetic and had problems in and out of hospital with that but nothing phased her, she was a beautiful girl.

“Brandon was quite funny, he was more like a school teacher, he was so intelligent.”

Image caption Mike Pearson said Michelle Pearson is expected to be in a medically-induced coma for the next three or four weeks

He described Michelle, who they said was in critical but stable condition, as “fiercely independent”.

“Michelle would do things her way. She loved her kids to pieces, she’d look after anyone. She was a friend to everyone,” he said.

“She didn’t have a bad word to say about anyone. She had a heart of gold, but she was nobody’s fool, she’d stand her corner.”

He said the family has recently been to church to pray for her recovery.

“She’s so badly burned, she’s bandaged from head to foot, she looks like a mummy and she’s going to be in the medically-induced coma for the next three or four weeks,” he said.

“It’s going to be a long road but hopefully she’ll pull through. Whether she’ll have the fight, I don’t know. I’m hoping she’ll get the strength from somewhere but she’s lost all her babies and that’s the heartbreaking thing.

“We’ve got to focus on Michelle and try and be there for her.”

Image caption Claire Pearson said the house on Jackson Street “was like a youth club with the amount of kids” who visited

He added he was “gobsmacked” at the support the family has received from the local community.

“The outpouring of love and support, it’s been overwhelming. People have come from miles to leave flowers and teddy bears and messages of support,” he said.

“They’ve been absolutely outstanding. We thank everyone for the messages and the love.”

  • Two men and a woman appeared in court earlier charged with murdering the siblings. They were remanded in custody until 9 March for a plea and trial preparation hearing.

Driver dies after school bus crash in Aberdeenshire

Crash scene

A 68-year-old man has died after the school bus he was driving was involved in a crash with a lorry and car on the outskirts of Aberdeen.

The accident happened on the B979 South Deeside Road near Maryculter Bridge at about 07:45.

There were 13 children on the bus, of primary and secondary age. They suffered only cuts and bruises.

The bus involved was carrying pupils from Lathallan private school in Johnshaven.

Police Scotland appealed for witnesses.

‘It’s been cold’

The male drivers of the DAF lorry and red Audi A4 were taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.

They were not thought to have suffered life-threatening injuries.

Insp Neil Morrison said: “Sadly the driver of the coach died of his injuries at the scene.

“The 13 on the coach were not seriously injured. They have been reunited with their parents.

“Any collision of this nature is traumatic and out thoughts are with those involved.”

He added of the road conditions: “It’s been cold, the road surface is a consideration for us.”

‘Extremely popular’

Lathallan headmaster Richard Toley said: “We have been informed by Police Scotland that the driver has sadly passed away.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, he was a larger than life character who was extremely popular with our pupils.

“He will be missed by us all.”

The road and nearby Milltimber Brae were expected to be closed for some time as investigations were carried out.

Tulse Hill hit-and-run: Police release CCTV images

CCTVImage copyright Met Police
Image caption The victim was hit on a pedestrian crossing on the South Circular Road near Norwood Road

Police investigating a fatal hit-and-run in which a woman was struck four times have released CCTV images of vehicles they believe were involved.

The victim, 29, was “left to die” on the pedestrian crossing, when all four drivers failed to stop, on Monday.

She was struck as she crossed Norwood Road in Tulse Hill, in south London, when the traffic lights were green.

The images show a white lorry – possibly a Mercedes, and a black car, similar to a Vauxhall SUV.

Detectives have traced two drivers allegedly involved but are still looking for the other two.

Image copyright Met Police
Image caption One of the vehicles believed to be involved in the hit-and-run was a white lorry
Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Police are urging the driver to come forward
Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Two of the four drivers have been traced so far

The victim, who was Polish and staying with family in Wandsworth, was struck by one lorry, before being hit by a second lorry and two cars, the Metropolitan Police believe.

She was treated by paramedics but died from her injuries, less than an hour after she was fatally injured at about 06:45 GMT on Monday.

Her family is due in the UK later, to enable her to be formally identified.

Police interviewed the 49-year-old male driver of the first lorry under caution and arrested the 52-year-old male driver of the second car on Tuesday.

Dashcam footage

He was detained on suspicion of causing death by careless driving and later released under investigation.

The Met said it was “grateful for all those witnesses who have come forward”.

But, they are still seeking any dashcam footage from drivers who were in the Norwood Road area between 06:30 and 07:00 GMT.

Acting Det Sgt Alastair Middleton, of the Met Police, said: “We continue to appeal for anyone who was passing and witnessed the collision and the moments afterwards to contact us immediately.

“Enquiries are continuing to trace the two outstanding vehicles involved. A number of actions, including the recovery of local CCTV footage are in hand. I would urge the two drivers we are yet to trace come forward and speak with my team.”

Church apology over Bishop George Bell abuse inquiry

Bishop George BellImage copyright Getty Images
Image caption George Bell was Bishop of Chichester from 1929 until his death in 1958

The Church of England has apologised to the relatives of a bishop for the way it investigated child abuse claims made against him decades after his death.

Former Bishop of Chichester George Bell, who died in 1958, was alleged to have repeatedly abused a young girl.

She made a formal complaint in 1995 and, 10 years later, won an apology and compensation from the Church.

A report into the handling of the case due to be published later is expected to be critical of the Church’s actions.

Ahead of the publication of Lord Carlile’s report, the current Bishop of Chichester the Right Reverend Martin Warner praised the “dignity and integrity” of Bishop Bell’s accuser, but said the Church inquiry paid “inadequate attention to the rights of those who are dead”.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Lord Carlile will reveal his review’s findings later on Friday

The allegations against George Bell were first made by the victim, known as “Carol”, in 1995, but were not investigated or referred to the police.

She said the bishop began abusing her when she was five and molested her in Chichester Cathedral as she sat listening to stories.

Carol said the abuse continued for about four years.

In 2013 she wrote to the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, at which point the matter was referred to the police.

Two years later the Church paid £16,800 in an out of court settlement and apologised to Carol.

However, the “George Bell Group” of supporters of the former bishop sought and gained a review into how the Church arrived at that decision.

Lord Carlile will publish the review’s findings at 10:00 GMT on Friday.

‘Principle of innocence’

In a statement issued on Thursday evening, Bishop Warner said: “We welcome Lord Carlile’s assessment of our processes, and apologise for failures in the work of the Core Group of national and diocesan officers and its inadequate attention to the rights of those who are dead.

“The emotive principle of innocent until proven guilty is a standard by which our actions are judged and we have to ensure as best we can that justice is seen to be done.

“Irrespective of whether she is technically a complainant, survivor, or victim, ‘Carol’ emerges from this report as a person of dignity and integrity.

“It is essential that her right to privacy continues to be fully respected.”

The Church also repeated its apology for failing to report Carol’s allegations to the police when she first came forward in 1995.

Twin babies’ ashes recovered after Richmond burglary

AshesImage copyright Met Police
Image caption The maroon box contained the ashes of twins who died at birth

A box containing the ashes of two babies which was stolen during a burglary has been recovered.

The maroon box was taken along with jewellery from a property in Castlegate in Richmond, south-west London, on Monday afternoon.

Scotland Yard said it was found during inquiries into another burglary in Buxton Road on Wednesday.

Three men have been arrested on suspicion of handling stolen goods over the burglary in Castlegate.

The box, which contained the ashes of twins who died at birth, will be returned to the parents on Friday, police said.

The arrested men, aged 37, 26 and 31, have been bailed over the burglary.

Salford house fire: Third murder charge

Four children who died in house fire in Salford and their motherImage copyright Facebook
Image caption Four siblings died as a result of the fire and their mother is under sedation

A third person has been charged with murdering four children killed in a house fire in Salford on Monday.

David Worrall, 25, of Worsley, Salford, will appear before magistrates later and has also been charged with arson and attempted murder.

Zac Bolland, 23, and Courtney Brierley, 20, also from Worsley, are due before Manchester Crown Court on similar charges.

Four siblings aged three to 15 died as a result of the blaze.

Demi Pearson, 15, died at the scene on Jackson Street. Her brother and sister, Brandon, eight, and Lacie, seven, died later in hospital.

Three-year-old sister Lia died in hospital on Wednesday.

Their mother Michelle, 35, remains under sedation.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Two people are also due before Manchester Crown Court later

Two 16-year-olds, who can not be named for legal reasons, in the house at the time of the blaze which broke out at about 05:00 GMT managed to escape.

Mr Worrall, Mr Bolland and Ms Brierley have all been remanded in custody.

Greater Manchester Police has referred the case to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) after confirming there had been incidents at the family’s home prior to the fire.

Boy, 5, dies after being hit by car in Bournemouth

Naseby RoadImage copyright Google
Image caption The boy was struck by the car as he crossed Naseby Road, police said

A fiveyear-old boy has died after he was hit by a car while crossing a road.

Police said the boy was struck by a black Vauxhall Corsa as he crossed Naseby Road, Bournemouth, shortly before 16:00 GMT on Wednesday.

He was taken to hospital where he died a short time later. The driver of the car, a woman aged in her 20s, was uninjured.

Police have urged witnesses to come forward and are seeking any CCTV from homes or dashcam footage from drivers.

The priceless pictures that survived Grenfell fire

Paul escaped from the sixth floor of Grenfell Tower.

He believed photos of his mother – who died of a brain tumour in 2010 – had been lost, along with a jewellery box.

But he has now been able to retrieve them.

Watch the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme on weekdays between 09:00 and 11:00 on BBC Two and the BBC News channel.