THE woman killed in a suspicious fire at her flat has been named locally as Sharron McQuarrie as detectives work to establish what caused the blaze.

The 32-year-old former Royal Navy steward was pronounced dead after firefighters pulled her from the third-floor flat she shared with Robert Vaughan at Thorley Court, Abbey Meads, in the early hours of Monday.

Twenty-five year-old Mr Vaughan, better known as Sam, was taken by helicopter to Frenchay Hospital, in Bristol, suffering from burns and the effects of smoke inhalation. He was still in a critical condition last night.

A post-mortem examination by a Home Office pathologist began yesterday and Sharron’s next of kin have been informed but police are awaiting formal identification.

More floral tributes were laid just inside the police cordon by friends and people touched by the tragedy.

One note read: “I don’t know who you were or why you did not get out in time RIP x. All my thoughts are with your family and friends, stay strong.”

Meanwhile, a source close to Sam’s family said they hoped he would recover.

He said: “He’s a very nice lad, never the kind to get into trouble. “He was always a little bit shy but always pleasant and I just hope he gets better and can recover from the burns and the smoke inhalation.”

Last night police said they were still treating Sharron’s death as unexplained.

At the building yesterday a detailed search of the surrounding paths, lawn and shrubs for any evidence that could aid the investigation has been completed by police.

Specialist Crime Scene Investigators worked all day inside the flat, assisted by investigators and specialist resources from Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service.

Residents who spent Monday night with friends and relatives were told they would be able to return to their homes yesterday.

Detective Inspector Matt Davey, of the Brunel major crime investigation team, said: “We have an unexplained death and we have to keep an open mind while we establish the cause of the fire.

“We have been contacted by several potential witnesses who were in the area at the time and we appreciate their co-operation.”

Anyone who has information, or was in the area of Thorley Court between 10.30pm on Sunday and 2.30am on Monday is asked to contact Wiltshire Police via 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.