Builder dies after house blaze in Wirral

A contractor renovating a house in Wirral has died after a fire which may have been caused by a cigarette.

The fire broke out on the ground floor of the house, off Ford Road, Upton, at about 19:50 BST.

The man was found unconscious in the kitchen by firefighters wearing breathing apparatus but paramedics could not resuscitate him.

Police and firefighters are investigating the cause of the fire.

"The gentleman who died was involved in the renovation of the property, he didn't actually own it," said a station manager Mark Thomas.

"It is difficult to say what caused the fire... initial indications are there might be some smoking materials with regards to the settee in the ground floor area."

A joint investigation is being carried out by Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service and Merseyside Police to discover the cause of the fire.

Three fire engines from Upton, West Kirby and Wallasey community fire stations attended.

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