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Woman, 85, Lay Dead In Her Flat For Five Years Before Anyone Noticed She Was Missing

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11...ed-missing.html

An elderly woman may have lain dead in her flat for five years even though she was in a city centre and surrounded by neighbours.

Isabella Purves was once a familiar figure on the streets around her Edinburgh home, where the public-spirited pensioner would regularly be seen clearing up litter to spruce up the neighbourhood.

She vanished from sight around 2004 but - in a shocking example of the erosion of community spirit in modern-day Britain - the alarm was only raised when a neighbour reported water dripping through the ceiling.

Tests are now being carried out to confirm that the body found by police who forced their way into the Edinburgh flat belongs to Ms Purves, who would have been 90 this year.

A spokesman for Lothian and Borders police said: 'Police were called to an address in Rodney Street in Edinburgh on June 30, after concerns were raised over an elderly resident.

'On entering the premises, officers discovered the body of a 90-year-old woman.

'There are no suspicious circumstances surrounding her death, and a report has been sent to the Procurator Fiscal.'

Giovanni Cilia, who owns the Fioritalia florist below Ms Purves's flat, said he was shocked at how long it took to find her.

He said: 'How did no one notice the smell, or wonder where she was?'

Mr Cilia told the Edinburgh Evening News: 'I heard there was a big pile of letters and bills behind the door.

'I used to see her walk past the shop maybe four times a week. She would often go across the street and pick up litter to clean the place up.'

Mr Cilia added: 'It's shocked everyone here. When I saw her she looked quite fit and healthy for her age.

'She used to wear boots and would often carry a rucksack like she enjoyed going for walks.'

Edinburgh City Council confirmed it was contacted about a leak from the property but said Ms Purves was not a council tenant.

Douglas McLellan, of Age Concern and Help the Aged in Scotland, said: 'This is a tragic case but perhaps not as surprising as people think.

'If she was not receiving care treatment from anyone and not receiving social care, then the likelihood of being found quickly is minimal.

'The question is not just about public services finding people and neighbours checking up, it's about how elderly people themselves are living their lives.

'If they're leading private lives, then how are people going to find them?'

Didn't anyone in govt depts notice that the pension wasn't being collected? Surely there must be some triggers in the system.

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Guest AuntJess
At least she never suffered Brown as Prime Minister.

Reminds me of that Beatle song " Eleanor Rigby" :(

Sad to have passed away without anyone knowing or caring. :(

It does not surprise me that the seat of officialdom did not realise she was gone. Thousands of illegal entrants are breaching this country's defences, and they haven't a clue about them either. <_<

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**** me. What about the utility companies, didn't they realise there was nobody around when the bills went unpaid for so long?

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**** me. What about the utility companies, didn't they realise there was nobody around when the bills went unpaid for so long?

How sad. :(

I suppose her pensions would have gone directly into her bank account and all her bills would have come out automatically?

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How sad. :(

I suppose her pensions would have gone directly into her bank account and all her bills would have come out automatically?

Hmm. That would explain it then.

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How sad. :(

I suppose her pensions would have gone directly into her bank account and all her bills would have come out automatically?

The wonder of direct debits, no-one cares so long as the money swishes round. I wonder if she left the lights or the heating on?

Poor woman. Very sad. Probably something that will become much more commonplace in the future given the erosion taking place in society, and the trend towards living alone.

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How sad. :(

I suppose her pensions would have gone directly into her bank account and all her bills would have come out automatically?

The bills can't have been very much either, saddest thing is when they die in front of the TV and it's still on months later

showing some cheery breakfast show, "we are your friends" kind of thing.

She did manage to escape the TV licence inspectors, which just goes to show.

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But how much is her flat worth now?

May the lady RIP.

Just wait, there'll be some 'caring' relative who will step forward and claim what is rightfully theirs. Makes you sick.

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+1, according to local press as well.

The neighbours thought she'd either moved away or into a home, they say.

Evidently no-one thought it unusual that there'd been no removal van, no-one thought it unusual that there was no sign of activity for five years, no sign of any family clearing the house after she'd gone, no sign of new neighbours - and bear in mind her flat was in a typical Edinburgh tenement - entry door at ground floor, common stair, and six or eight flats with their own front doors off this stair.....

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Tis not nice. I've lived in a tenement in Edinburgh; but things being the way they are these days I of course didn't know who else was living in the flat with me let alone the rest of the close.

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It does not surprise me that the seat of officialdom did not realise she was gone. Thousands of illegal entrants are breaching this country's defences, and they haven't a clue about them either. <_<

It's a shame that you saw fit to attempt to associate this sad story with such BNP style ramblings.

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Guest AuntJess
It's a shame that you saw fit to attempt to associate this sad story with such BNP style ramblings.

It is an even bigger shame you chose to associate the FACT that this country's immigration system is largely an enigma, to those who get paid to run it, with a fascist party. <_<

There is a definite connection between the lack of communication that abounds in those corridors of power - where decisions affecting the future of the nation are made - and the total lack of communication in other key areas of our lives. Utilities/ DSS. etc.

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Can we leave the fascist politics out this unless and until it is shown she was murdered by an illegal immigrant who conspired to hide her body for five years?

Things that are as deeply tragic as this, and things that are deeply unsettling to people who secretly know it could well happen to them in future, don't need dragged into that sort of thing.

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Surely the issue of this is the fact that many are forced to separate from their families in search of affordable housing?

It has become the norm to ignore family in search of the holy grail of happiness which is your 'own home'.

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When colleagues at work were talking about this - I said this will be me.

I have no illusions about it.

It's the way society has gone if you have no immediate family - and since we all seem not to recognise our neighbours these days even when they are in the next door flat - it's likely this will increase.

In fact, because I don't have a house and will never afford one in my life time - I might be a bit luckier - as I'll be a bag-lady on the street - and hopefully someone will notice me sill lying there after a week or so.

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The bills can't have been very much either, saddest thing is when they die in front of the TV and it's still on months later

showing some cheery breakfast show, "we are your friends" kind of thing.

She did manage to escape the TV licence inspectors, which just goes to show.

Aside: at that age she wasn't paying a TV license.

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