TRIBUTES have been paid to a man who died in a fire at a flat in Ellesmere Port.
William McGuinness, 56, was pulled from the burning block in Sutton Way but despite efforts by the emergency services to revive him, he died at the scene.
Mr McGuinness had lived at the property with his brother John, who was too upset to talk about his loss.
But a neighbour who had known William for 20 years said: 'He was a really nice bloke with a good sense of humour.
'He didn't have a bad bone in his body. He and his brother John were really good neighbours.'
Cheshire coroner Nicholas Rheinberg formally opened and adjourned an inquest into William McGuinness's death yesterday.
The fire started in the kitchen of the McGuinness's flat around 7.40pm on Tuesday of last week.
The flames extensively damaged the kitchen and got into the roof-space above. There was heat and smoke damage to the rest of the flat.
The other residents in the block were evacuated but none were hurt as the fire didn't spread to their homes.
Fire officers are still investigating the exact cause of the blaze. But Cheshire police spokeswoman Donna Bell said: 'The fire is not being treated as suspicious.'
Borough council officials are now examining the flat to see if, and how, it can be repaired.
A council spokesman said: 'The property was released by the police on Wednesday afternoon.
'We are currently making an assessment of the damage, which initially looks to be significant and extensive.
'However, the maisonette below was remarkably undamaged in the circumstances.'