MYSTERY surrounds the death of a woman whose body was found decomposed in her home.

Joyce Evans, of Spicer's Way, Totton, was said to have stopped leaving her house and was confined to her living room in the years before her death.

She was found dead in her chair on March 4, last year, the hearing at Winchester Coroner’s Court was told.

Following the discovery of the 68-year-old’s police were called and PC Ashworth said the sitting room “appeared to be a little cluttered and appeared to be where Joyce spent most of her time.”

Her son Anthony said that Mrs Evans was visited three times a day for cleaning and basic assistance after she developed chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – long term breathing problems.

The hearing was also told that she was refused oxygen as she would not give up smoking, and also drunk two bottles of wine a day.

Coroner Jason Pegg said that there were “signs of early decomposition” and pathologist Dr Adrian Bateman was unable to ascertain how she died.

He continued, saying that Mrs Evans was last seen at 3.45pm on the day she died, but said he was unable to determine how Mrs Evans’ died, giving an open conclusion.