South East Wales

Cwmbran fire: Police have extra 24 hours to question man

Kim Buckley, Kayleigh Buckley and Kimberley Buckley
Image caption Three generations of the Buckley family died in the fire

Police have been granted a further 24 hours to question a man over the deaths of three members of a family in a house fire in Cwmbran, Torfaen.

Kim Buckley, 46, daughter Kayleigh, 17, and six-month-old grand-daughter Kimberley died on the Coed Eva estate.

A 27-year-old man from the Manchester area was arrested shortly after the fire on Tuesday and is being held on suspicion of murder.

Gwent Police said it was granted extra time by Caerphilly Magistrates' Court.

The force said on Wednesday officers were continuing to investigate the cause and the circumstances surrounding the fire.

Police have said neighbours tried to save the family but were beaten back by flames.

A Gwent Police statement said: "Gwent Police has been granted a warrant to further detain the 27-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murder yesterday.

Image caption Floral tributes and messages have been left at the scene in Cwmbran

"A 24-hour warrant of further detention was granted by Caerphilly Magistrates' Court this afternoon."

Friends of the Buckley family have spoken of their shock at their loss.

Rachel Speed, from Fairwater High School which Kayleigh attended, said she was remembered fondly there.

"It was devastating today," she said. "Absolute travesty. Not just for the pupils and the staff but for the wider community as well.

"Even pupils who didn't know her particularly well have been traumatised by it. They've been offered counselling within the school."

Terena Mellor, 26, a friend of Kim Buckley, described her as "a character, very loud and fun-loving".

"If she saw you on the other side of the road she would have shouted out your name and asked you how you were," she said.

Ms Mellor said she believed daughter Kayleigh had been pregnant with twin daughters but had tragically lost one in birth.

'Difficult to believe'

The surviving daughter, Kimberley, had only recently been allowed home after spending time in intensive care at the Royal Gwent Hospital, in Newport.

Ms Mellor added: "This is such a tragedy. Kim and Kayleigh were very close and this should have been a happy time for everyone in the family.

"It is difficult to believe what has happened."

Police have referred the case to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) as officers had been called to the address on other occasions.

Firefighters were called to the fire scene at around 03:30 BST on Tuesday.

Gwent Police said any witnesses should contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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