AN ELDERLY woman has died in a house fire in Sale.

Police and fire services are investigating after the body of a woman in her mid-seventies was found following a search of a property in Priory Road, Sale, this morning.

At about 8.15am, police were called by the fire service to reports that a fire had engulfed the house.

The woman’s next of kin have been informed.

Anyone with information is encouraged to come forward. Police and fire are investigating the cause of the fire.

Damian O’Rourke, Greater Mancester Fire area manager for Trafford and Salford, said: “Our thoughts are with the family of the lady that has sadly lost her life. Incidents such as these are thankfully rare but that doesn’t make them any less tragic.

“Our firefighters were on the scene within minutes and wearing breathing apparatus went into the house to extinguish the fire and look for any casualties.

“A joint investigation with the police has begun to determine the cause of the fire.”

Mr O'Rouke said the fire was thought to have started on the ground floor because of the extent of the fire damage. 

The fire is not thought to be suspicous but the investigation is still on going.

Peter Griffith, who lives in Priory Road, did not know the woman who died and thought the house was empty. 

He said: "The gentlemen who used to live there was a widower and that was his wife I think.

"She used to come round in a taxi, I thought she had left the house empty. I didn't know she was living there."

Firefighters used six breathing apparatus, three hose reels, a jet and a ventilation fan to tackle the fire.

Ben Levy, group manager for Trafford and Salford, said: “Our crews did a fantastic job in these heart-breaking circumstances and will be receiving personal support from our health and wellbeing teams.”

Priory Road is currently closed so residents are asked to use other routes.

Firefighters remain on the scene to monitor the house for any hotspots.

GMP’s detective chief inspector Gwyn Dodd, said: “It’s extremely sad that we’ve had to inform someone’s family that their loved one has died this morning – our thoughts and specialist support remain with them as they deal with the tragic news.

“It is still very early stages for the investigation but we’re acting quickly with our fire service colleagues to find out exactly what has happened.

“I want to encourage anyone who saw something or anyone who has information to contact us at their earliest opportunity.”

Anyone with information should contact police on 101 quoting reference number 634 of 28/01/18 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.