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Amesbury Novichok poisoning flat to be demolished

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  • Russian spy poisoning
image captionPolice believe Charley Rowley and Dawn Sturgess were exposed to the nerve agent after handling a contaminated perfume bottle

The flat where a woman was fatally poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok is being demolished.

Dawn Burgess died in 2018 after unknowingly spraying herself with Novichok contained in a perfume bottle at her partner Charlie Rowley's home in Amesbury, Wiltshire.

The flat is eight miles from Salisbury where former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and daughter Yulia were poisoned.

Work to knock down the empty property in Amesbury is starting on Monday.

Mr Rowley and Ms Sturgess came into contact with the military-grade nerve agent, developed by the Soviet Union in the Cold War, in a discarded perfume bottle.

image copyrightReuters/BBC
image captionSergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia survived the poisoning attempt

The bottle had been used to spray the chemical on the front door handle of Mr Skripal's home in Salisbury.

Ms Sturgess lived in Salisbury, and the couple had been in the city before going to Mr Rowley's flat on 29 June.

Paramedics were called to the flat Mr Rowley, 44, collapsed, and later the same day when 45-year-old Ms Sturgess fell ill.

The mother-of-three, from Salisbury, died later. Mr Rowley was discharged from hospital in July.

image copyrightEPA
image captionParamedics were called to the property - first when Dawn Sturgess, 44, collapsed, and later after Charlie Rowley, 45, also fell ill

Housing provider Stonewater said it had agreed with Wiltshire Council to demolish two flats within an end-terrace property in Muggleton Road, due to them being empty, after taking residents' views and the current state of the properties into consideration.

"We expect the main demolition to take around three weeks, with some more minor reinstatement afterwards," a spokesman said.

"The cleared area will be landscaped, creating additional green space for the community and we'll be providing two additional homes at an alternative development nearby to ensure that there is no loss of affordable housing in south Wiltshire.

"Whilst we cannot forget the events that unfolded at this property, we're pleased we've been able to work together to come to this successful conclusion and we'll be doing our absolute best to minimise disruption."

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More on this story

  • Novichok poisoning: Charlie Rowley's flat to be demolished

  • Russian spy poisoning: Why was Sergei Skripal attacked?