A MAN was found dead amid smoke and flames at his home yesterday.

The victim, believed to be in his late fifties, was confirmed dead at the scene, the ground floor of a two-bedroom semi-detached property in Belmont, on the outskirts of Durham.

Neighbours in Coniston Close raised the alarm shortly after 2pm, after seeing smoke pouring from the house.

But attempts to gain access proved impossible because of the fumes and flames.

No one else was in the house at the time.

Police were last night unable to name the dead man until formal identification had been made and next of kin informed.