Tributes to ‘nice lady’ killed in a house blaze

Tragedy: A policeman stands guard outside the scene of a fatal house fire in Leyland Lane, Leyland
Tragedy: A policeman stands guard outside the scene of a fatal house fire in Leyland Lane, Leyland
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Tributes were today paid to a woman who died in a house fire.

Maureen Brandwood, 71, died following a fire in her home in Leyland Lane, Leyland on Sunday night.

Maureen, who is understood to have worked as model when she was younger, has been described by neighbours as “nice” and “chatty.”

It is believed that Maureen has lived in the cottage for around 20 years.

A fire broke out in her home at around 8.20pm on Sunday.

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service said today that the most likely cause of the fire is from a cigarette or smoking materials.

A spokesman for the service said a cigarette could have been discarded without being properly extinguished or Mrs Brandwood could have fallen asleep and dropped the cigarette,

Next door neighbour Glenda Sinnott said: “It was us that rang the fire brigade. It was smoke in the kitchen that alerted us to it.”

Glenda said she hadn’t expected the outcome to be so serious. She said: “When dialling 999 I thought am I doing the right thing or am I over reacting?

“I went in the kitchen and thought my glasses were steaming up, I took my glasses off and it was full of smoke.

“She was a very sociable person. Very chatty. She was a very chatty person when she was well. “When she was well she got out most days.”

Neighbour Derek Stevenson, 87, added: “She was a nice lady, she couldn’t walk much, she had carers coming every morning and every night.

“She was a really nice lady.

“I’ve not seen her a lot for the last 12 months, she’s never outside the house. “She’s a really nice lady, she used to come in and have a chat.”

He added: “It is awful really. You don’t expect it to be next door to you.

“We used to swap books and videos one time but I haven’t seen her for ages.”

One neighbour who didn’t want to be named said: ““It is all very sad really.

“I saw her going in and out with her shopping now and again but she seemed to keep herself to herself. The first thing I knew about anything happening was when I saw the blue flashing lights turn up and the ambulance and fire men were here. She was a very private person, she had plenty of people going in looking after her.”

It is believed that Mrs Brandwood leaves a son and sister, who lives in the Isle of Man.

Mrs Brandwood didn’t have any smoke alarms in her home.

To arrange a free Home Fire Safety Check call 0800 1691125 or visit