Belfast Telegraph

Neighbours tell of shock after pensioner dies in Lisburn house fire

By Nevin Farrell

A pensioner who died in a house fire on the outskirts of Lisburn has been named locally as Cecil McCullough.

Police and fire crews were last night investigating the circumstances of the blaze which led to the elderly man's death.

Mr McCullough was believed to be in his 80s.

He lived in a bungalow on Dagger Road in the Moira Road area.

He is survived by his wife, named locally as Beth. It is understood they had three children.

Mr McCullough had associations with Priesthill Methodist Church near Lisburn.

At the McCullough home yesterday police still had the scene sealed off since being called there early on Saturday morning.

From the front of the house yesterday there was no outward sign of a fire.

Local people said they understood Mr McCullough had recently been residing at a care home before returning to his own residence in an area where he lived all his life.

Police have urged any witnesses to come forward.

Detective Chief Inspector Andrew Freeburn said: "Police are appealing to anyone who was in the area between 7pm on Friday November 7 and 10am on Saturday November 8 and saw or heard anything that would assist police with their inquiries to contact Lisburn CID on the non-emergency number 101."

The Fire Service received a report at 9.53am on Saturday and sent three appliances to the scene where firefighters wearing breathing apparatus entered the house and quickly located the man.

Group commander Fergal Leonard said: "Sadly the man has passed away and we would like to pass on our sympathy to his family and friends.

"The cause has not yet been established and we are working with the PSNI," he added.

People were stunned at the death in the quiet country area close to Magheragall beside the main Belfast to Dublin railway line.

Dagger Road neighbour Beverley Scott (32) said: "Everybody here is shocked that this has happened. He was a man who kept himself to himself. He was a frail man and it very sad that he has passed away. It is an awful shame.

"I noticed the police in the area early on Saturday," she added.

Another neighbour said: "Cecil lived in this area all his life. He was in poor health and had pains and arthritis. I think his son found him at the weekend. Cecil used to work in the nearby Lisburn Hide Company before he retired.

"He only got out of a care home around a week ago. We are all shocked at what happened."

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