Date: 28 Jan 1997
Isabelle Gray was found dead in her kitchen on 28 January 1997.
She was discovered by a meals-on-wheels woman that had called and had found her front door closed but not locked.
It was thought that she had been murdered by travelling criminals. The police said that they found receipts from cowboy builders showing that she had paid in cash for services and it was said that the fact that she paid in cash had come to the attention of the people that had killed her.
At her inquest it was concluded that she had been unlawfully killed, almost certainly by bogus tradesmen calling at her door. It was heard that her death was not considered suspicious at first and that it was only when her injuries were identified doing the post-mortem that murder was suspected.
It was said that after attacking her the people responsible for her death had put her in on a chair in the kitchen and left her there to die.
Isabelle Gray had a fractured cheekbone and spine.
She was last seen on 27 January 1997 at about 1pm by a neighbour when she came home on her mobility scooter from the shops.
It was thought that two men later called around teatime. The police thought that they had then assaulted Isabelle Gray in her hallway and then dragged her into her kitchen where they had forced her to tell them where she kept her money.
When the police examined her home they found that her handbag was missing and that there was money missing from a chest of drawers in her bedroom.
Her keys were found left on the stairs.
The police said that they carried out extensive enquiries into distraction burglars and rogue traders but with no luck.
They said that they found footprints in Isabelle Gray's attic which they thought might have been left by her attackers.
Reports were also made of two men that had been seen with a white Transit Van in Poplar Avenue two weeks earlier who had asked a person if they wanted their bushes pruning but who were not seen again.