Heysham gas explosion: Investigation ongoing as parents pay tribute to son, 2, killed in blast

An investigation is ongoing into a suspected gas explosion that killed a toddler in Heysham on Sunday (May 16).

By Matthew Calderbank
Monday, 17th May 2021, 9:19 am
Updated Tuesday, 18th May 2021, 7:28 am

Emergency services were called to the scene in Mallowdale Avenue at around 2.40am, where three homes had been destroyed in the blast.

Tragically, George Arthur Hinds, aged two years and 10 months, died in the explosion.

His parents Vicky Studholme and Stephen Hinds, who were also injured, but not seriously, have paid tribute to their "beautiful little angel".

George Arthur Hinds, aged two years and 10 months, died following a suspected gas explosion in Heysham. Pic: Lancashire Police

They said: "We are devastated at the loss of our beautiful George.

"He was so precious to us. We have no words to describe how we feel and just want time to ourselves to come to terms with what has happened. Our beautiful little angel grew his wings today."

Two other people remain in hospital with injuries described as critical.

Lancashire Police said enquiries into the cause of the explosion are now underway and are "likely to take some time".

Police were called to the scene of the blast on Mallowdale Avenue in Heysham at around 2.40am on Sunday (May 16)

Chief Insp Chris Hardy said: “This appalling incident has resulted in the loss of a young boy’s life and has left two others with very serious injuries.

My thoughts today are with George’s family and loved ones at this sad time, as well as those others affected by this incident.

"While we have today started our enquiries, alongside our partners, into what led to yesterday’s explosion I must stress that we are faced with an extremely complex scene which needs painstaking and forensic investigation.

"I appreciate that the community are concerned and want answers but I’m afraid it is likely to take some considerable time before we are in a position to provide them.

"I would like to appeal to anyone who may have information which could assist our investigation to come forward and contact us. Even if you think the information you have is insignificant or irrelevant please tell us and we can be the judge.

"I would also ask that people try and avoid speculating about what may have happened and what the cause of this tragic incident may have been and give police and partners the time and space to make the enquiries they need to get to the truth."

"The emergency services, local authority and partners remain at the site and a safety cordon remains in place.

"A number of residents have been evacuated and are being looked after by the local authority.

"Gas service engineers are working to make the area safe.

"People are being asked to avoid the area while we deal with this ongoing incident."

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Anyone with any information should contact police on log 0180 of May 16 or on the Major Incident Portal.