NOBODY CARED: Pensioner found after six years lying dead in his flat

Tenant lay undiscovered for six years

Hemsworth Rd, Bolton. Credit: Google Maps Image Capture, Sep 2022.

The body of an elderly man, who died alone, was discovered six years after he died at home.

Seventy-year-old Robert Alton was found inside his flat on Hemsworth Road, Bolton, on March 9 this year.

Mr Alton’s landlord was Bolton at Home, a housing association that owns, manages and maintains over 18,000 homes in the area.

Yesterday, Noel Sharpe, Group Chief Executive Office for Bolton at Home posted an online statement: ‘On 9 March 2023 we learned of the death of our tenant Robert Alton after his body was discovered at his home in Hemsworth Road, Bolton. The subsequent police and coroner’s investigation has concluded Robert’s death was not suspicious and that he likely died in May 2017.

‘Everyone at Bolton at Home has been deeply shocked by this and we realise it will concern and upset people to learn his body remained undiscovered for such a long time. It’s completely unacceptable to us that something like this has happened, and we’ve taken action to reduce the risk of it happening again.’

The statement continued, ‘we made many attempts to contact Robert over a number of years to arrange gas safety checks. It’s clear that the action taken by us to understand why we couldn’t contact him didn’t go far enough. Opportunities were missed in spotting that something was potentially wrong. We should have done more to check on Robert’s welfare.’

In conclusion Ms Sharpe said, ‘I would like to offer our heartfelt condolences to Robert’s loved ones, friends and neighbours and apologise to them for the opportunities we missed in finding out why we couldn’t contact him.’

The coroner recorded an open verdict. Sadly, despite efforts by greater Manchester Police, no relatives have been found.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.