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Tragic discovery in hoarders' house after neighbours hadn't seen woman for years

There's been a tragic discovery inside the home of an obsessive hoarder in the west of Wales.

Neighbours of Gaynor Jones, 87, who some said hadn't been seen for four years, raised the alarm after finding her daughter, Valerie Jones, 56, collapsed under the debris in a 19th century stone cottage in Aberaeron in Wales on March 12.

Valerie is said to be lucky to be alive but police consequently worked their way through huge piles of clutter and discovered the body of her mother four days later.

The hoarder's home was among this set of cottages in West Wales. Source: Google Maps
The hoarder's home was among this set of cottages in West Wales. Source: Google Maps

Neighbours believe her daughter had been sharing the house with her dead mother for “many months or even years”.

Police brought in skip bins to remove furniture and clutter before finding the decomposed body. Her death is currently being treated as unexplained.

“I think the mother was born there herself, so the cottages have been in her family’s hands for about a century," one neighbour said.

“They were well known, not for being seen about, but as the old Welsh family who kept themselves to themselves. They were very reclusive.

“You certainly wouldn’t pop over for a cup of tea. I guess you could describe them as odd.”

Neighbours said the mother and daughter were mainly Welsh speakers and rarely mixed with others in the town.

Local county councillor Elizabeth Evans said she had known Mrs Jones and her daughter all her life.

“The most important thing at the moment is that Valerie is safe and in hospital,” she said.

Their home is the first of three stone buildings known as the Dolheulog Cottages believed to have been built in the late 19th century.

A police spokesperson said Dyfed-Powys Police received a report concerning the welfare of two women from the Aberaeron area.

“On police attendance at the property one female was taken to hospital," the spokesperson said.

“Following a search of the property the remains of a body have been found.”

An inquest into Mrs Jones’s death is due to be opened.