Daughter climbed into bed with dead mum and torched house with petrol

A grieving daughter died after setting her house on fire and climbing into bed with her dead mum, an inquest has heard.

Julie Tierney, 50, committed suicide just two days after the death of her mum Pamela, 78, who had been battling cancer.

The pair, described as "eccentric loners", lived together in a small bungalow near Newmarket, Cambs.

On May 7 last year, the rear of their house was levelled by an explosion and a huge fire swept through the rest of the property.

Newmarket firefighter Dave Turner said emergency services could see a "black plume of smoke on the horizon” as they rushed to the scene, Cambridgeshire Live reports.

Using a thermal imaging drone, two bodies were found in one of the bedrooms – with Julie lying next to her mum in her bed.

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A post-mortem examination found Julie had died from wounds sustained in the fire.

However, Pamela was died from natural causes two days before the gas explosion, which the rest of their family were unaware of.

Fire investigator Conrad Burgess told Suffolk Coroners Court: “In my work I've seen whole roofs engulfed in flames but not an entire bungalow.

“We identified two bodies were lying together beneath the debris in one of the bedrooms."

The pair were reclusive and did not get on well with others in the village, the inquest heard.

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According to neighbours, they were involved in a series of long-running feuds with other families living in the area.

One man who worked near the Tierneys' house said: "They kept themselves to themselves, boarded off one side of their house and had cameras on the other side of their home.

"They never left the house."

Detective Inspector Tam Burgess, from Suffolk Police, said: "The information we found was that Pamela was in quite poor health or bed-bound. Neighbours described them both as quite reclusive, and didn't see a lot of them.

"A letter arrived on either May 8 or 9 to Pamela's sister. We were able to identify from parts of handwriting in the house that Julie was the one who had sent the letter."

The remainder of their family had not been aware of Pamela's condition.

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The inquest also heard that Julie had been suffering with OCD and would not let workmen visit the house.

She deliberately started the fire by pouring petrol throughout the house, it concluded.

Prior to the inquest, Suffolk coroner Nigel Parsley received a letter from one of Julie's sisters – claiming she had lived with her mum her entire life.

She said that Julie's world must have "fallen apart" after her death.

Mr Parsley concluded that Pamela Tierney had died from cancer two days before the explosion and that Julie Tierney died as a result of fume inhalation caused by the fire, taking her own life.

He said: "Julie must have intended that act. I think the most compelling piece of evidence is that when the fire was set ,Julie went and lay down next to her mum.

"That gives me clear evidence that Julie intended her death."

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