26/Jul/2014 - Last News Update: 18:04

Oldham explosion: Church service for Jamie Heaton

Category: England

Published: 28th Jun 2012 11:38:15

A church service is being held following an explosion in Oldham in which a two-year-old boy died.

Jamie Heaton was killed while watching television at his home in Buckley Street, Shaw, on Tuesday.

His neighbour Andrew Partington, 27, suffered severe burns in the suspected gas explosion.

A 32-year-old man is being questioned after being arrested on suspicion of manslaughter on Wednesday by Greater Manchester Police.

The Bishop of Middleton the Rt Rev Mark Davies is leading prayers at Saint James's parish church, which is not far from the scene of the explosion.

A steady stream of people have been signing a book of condolence which was opened earlier.

People will be able to sign the book until 14:00 BST and again from 18:00 to 19:00.

The church will also be open from 11:00 to 14:00 and 18:00 to 19:00 on Friday, and from 11:00 to 14:00 on Monday.

The parish vicar, the Rev Lynne Connolly, said: "This is a shocking situation. The prayers of all the churches and centres of worship in Shaw are with the bereaved family and all those who have been affected by this tragedy.

"It's a devastating situation for anyone to go through. I am at present offering prayerful support, and being a presence in the community.

"And our thoughts and prayers are with all those who have been affected in any way and especially with the family of Jamie Heaton who has died."

Jamie's mother Michelle had been in the back yard at the time of the explosion, hanging out washing.

Her husband Kenny and two other children, Jodie and Jack, were not at home.

Police are also waiting to question Mr Partington. Officers said they had "significant questions" to put to him.

Police are at his bedside at Wythenshawe Hospital in Manchester waiting to be given the go-ahead by doctors to question him. They said he remained in a serious but stable condition.

The massive explosion at about 11.15 BST destroyed number 11 Buckley Street, where Jamie lived, and number nine, where Mr Partington lived.

It is understood Mr Partington had only moved into the property about six weeks ago.

Flowers were left in tribute at the edge of the police cordon still in place around the devastated streets at the centre of the blast.

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BBC News, 2012. Oldham explosion: Church service for Jamie Heaton [Online] (Updated 28th Jun 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1437372/Oldham-explosion-Church-service-for-Jamie-Heaton [Accessed 26th Jul 2014]

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