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Last Updated: Wednesday, 26 October 2005, 17:21 GMT 18:21 UK
Fumes theory behind family deaths
Patrick and Gloria Chidgey and inset photo McCauley Thomas
Mr and Mrs Chidgey died in their home with great grandson McCauley
A couple and their great-grandson found dead in a house in south Wales are "likely" to have been killed by carbon monoxide poisoning, police have said.

Patrick Chidgey, 71, his wife Gloria, 68, and McCauley Thomas, 5, died at the house in Pontllanfraith on Tuesday.

Their bodies were discovered by McCauley's mother, who returned at about 2030 BST after a shopping trip.

Traces of carbon monoxide were found at the address in Brynhyfryd Street by South Wales Fire Service.

The results of the post-mortem examinations are yet to be released.

Chief Inspector Andy Adams of Gwent Police said although carbon monoxide was the likely cause of death, the investigation was continuing.

He said: "The gas board were called in last night, with the fire service as well. They've got carbon monoxide detectors and it's through their services we managed to detect a high level of carbon monoxide.

"Naturally now we've got to look to the source of that carbon monoxide and see whether or not that was a significant contributory factor to what we're dealing with at the moment."

Bouquet left at Mr and Mrs Chidgey's home
They were the loveliest people you would ever want to have as your neighbours
John Iles

He added his officers were helping the family and the community to come to terms with the tragedy.

"We've got experienced officers, it's a good close-knit community and they're well thought of in the community.

"Our neighbourhood policing officers are out and about, they're reassuring the public providing a high degree of visibility and working very closely with the community indeed at this time."

On Wednesday, neighbours spoke of their "absolute devastation and shock" at news of the deaths.

They said Mr and Mrs Chidgey - known as Gloria, but whose first name was actually Hazel - adored their children, grandchildren and great-grand children and regularly had the children to stay at their house.

Tributes paid

Ann Iles, who has lived on the same street as the couple for 45 years, said the first they knew something had happened was at about 2000 BST on Tuesday.

McCauley's mother arrived at the house and was heard shouting for help.

Mrs Iles said: "You can't think that anything like this could have happened to such a nice family, it's unbelievable."

Floral tributes outside house guarded by police officer
Relatives laid flowers at the couple's Pontllanfraith home

Mrs Iles' husband, John, added: "They were the loveliest people you would ever want to have as your neighbours."

Relatives delivered flowers bearing messages to the front door of Mr and Mrs Chidgey's house.

They left two bouquets next to the doorstep, one with a white teddy bear.

The message on one read: "McCauley, our precious son, who brought joy and happiness. You will always be with us in our hearts and so sorely missed. Lots of love, hugs and kisses, Mummy, Daddy, Bethan and Ieuan."

The other message read: "Nanny and Bampy - you were really special to us. We will always love and miss you. Please take good care of McCauley for us. Love always, Adele, Kayley, Lee and Ieuan."


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