Elderly couple kill themselves in ‘suicide pact’

ELDERLY couple kill themselves in car explosion ‘suicide pact’

Paul and Susan Dickinson, both, 71, killed themselves in a deliberate car explosion after their home was badly damaged by floods. The couple returned to their cottage in Cranberry, Staffordshire for the first time since the flood on August 15.

An inquest into their deaths heard that their bodies were found sitting in their car in a garage beside the house. The flooding of the couple’s home, where they had lived for 45 years, was a ‘traumatic event’, the inquest heard.

Fire service investigator Luke Beckett said: “In this particular case, the likely source of ignition would be a naked flame, either a lighter or a match.

“The fire was ignited from within the vehicle inside the garage at the rear of the cottage.

“The fire then spread to involve the structure of the garage and its contents.

A hire vehicle was found at the front of the house, with a signed ‘suicide note’ written by the tragic couple.

Now South Staffordshire coroner Andrew Haigh said: “It’s what they both sadly wanted and I am content, on the balance of probabilities, that the deaths can both be described as suicide.”


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Written by

Sarah Keane

Former teacher and health services manager with a Degree in English, Sarah moved to Spain from Southern Ireland with her husband, who runs his own car rental business, in 2019. She is now enjoying a completely different pace and quality of life on the Costa Blanca South, with wonderful Spanish and expat friends in Cabo Roig. Sarah began working with Euro Weekly News in 2020 and loves nothing more than bringing all the latest national and international news to her local community.


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