A MURDER investigation has been launched after a 73-year-old man was found stabbed to death at a house in Farnworth.

Police found the dead man — named locally as David Knowles — at about 6pm last night at his home in Bolton Road.

They are currently quizzing a 66-year-old woman — thought to be Mr Knowles’ wife Christine — who has been arrested on suspicion of murder.

An eyewitness reported seeing an elderly lady being led out of the house and into a police car between 6.30pm and 6.45pm.

The house is now cordoned off and forensic experts are combing the crime scene.

Mohammad Saleem, who lives next door to the couple, said: “I was at work last night but when I came back this morning I saw all the police cars on the other side of the road.

“I asked the police officer what had happened and he said someone had died.

“They were a very nice couple and Christine was very nice. She has come round to our house before.

“If anyone needed help she would give it, and we sometimes helped her as well.

“She is an old lady - I just can’t imagine that this could have happened.”

Mrs Knowles is a registered mental health nurse, although it is not known whether she is still a practising nurse.


Neighbours thought the couple were both retired.

It is understood that Mr and Mrs Knowles have a daughter, Zoe, who comes to visit them frequently.

Mr Saleem added: “They were just nice, genuine people and never bothered us at all.

“I cannot believe this thing has happened.

“I asked my wife, who is a teacher, this morning, whether she saw anything but she didn’t hear or see anything.“

Chloe Richardson, aged 15, who lives in Norfolk Drive with mum Michelle Smith was returning from the shops when she saw a lady being put in a police car.

She said: “I was on my way back and we saw an old lady came out of the house and being escorted into a police car.

“She had a big grin on her face when I saw her.“

"Ms Smith said: “We have had things happen round here but nothing like this.

“My first worry was that people had broken in as a lot of older people live on their own.

“It’s a real shame and you just do not expect to hear it.”

Connor Tither, who lives nearby, said: “We have been here for seven or eight years and they have always been here.

“I just heard the cars come last night, I didn’t know anything until then.”

“They always seem such a nice couple.”

A Greater Manchester Police spokesman said the report of a stabbing came to them just after 6pm.

He added: “A 66-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of murder and remains in police custody for questioning.

“An investigation has been launched to establish the full circumstances leading to the man's death.”

Anyone with information can call police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.