THE son of an elderly couple who were found dead in their home is still in a serious condition in hospital.

The couple, believed to be in their 70s and named locally as Thomas and Audrey Graham, were found collapsed at their house in Paton Avenue, Great Lever, at 8.30am on Wednesday morning.

Their son, named locally as Colin, and in his 40s, is in a serious but stable condition in a high dependency unit.

It is thought that the deaths of the couple, who, along with their son, had not suffered any visible injuries, could have been caused by a gas leak from a faulty appliance in the home.

A fire service spokesman said crews who attended the incident isolated the gas supply in the house because gas was coming from an unignited fire.

National Grid staff were also on the scene on Wednesday to carry out safety checks and to check for carbon monoxide, but found no trace of it.

Great Lever councillor Mohammed Ayub said it was essential for people to check their appliances.

He added: “It is very important for people to check their appliances as these things can be very dangerous — they can be killers.

“A lot of people in Great Lever are very shocked about what has happened. It is very sad thing and now we have to hope that the son makes a full recovery.”


Tributes have poured in from the local community. Anjad Karim runs the AK Grocers shop in Lowther Street, around the corner from where the family lived.

He said: “The gentleman was a regular in the shop and he was a very nice, quiet man.

“He used to come in to buy milk and we would have a bit of a chat. It is very shocking to hear this news.”

Another neighbour, who did not wish to be named, said: “It is sad to hear about this. It makes me think about checking that my gas supply is safe.”

Police are investigating the cause of the deaths and are waiting the results of toxicology reports after post mortem examinations were inconclusive.