A suspected plot to burgle the home of late singer Cilla Black has been foiled, her eldest son has revealed.
Robert Willis made the claim on the day a coroner ruled Black died from an accidental traumatic head injury during a fall at her home in Spain.
Thames Valley Police said they were investigating after a professionally-cut hole appeared in a fence at a property in Denham, Buckinghamshire.
“I cannot believe someone would stoop so low,” Mr Willis said.
“It’s inconceivable. Thankfully it was discovered in time.”
‘Celebrated and loved’
Just days before her funeral, police confirmed they were investigating a case of criminal damage at the property.
The 72-year-old entertainer was found dead at her villa in Estepona on the Costa del Sol on 1 August.
Mr Willis spoke out after a 15-minute hearing at Liverpool Coroner’s Court, where coroner Andre Rebello recorded a verdict of accidental death.
Addressing the hearing, attended by Mr Willis and brothers Ben and Jack, Mr Rebello referred to the star by her real name Priscilla Maria Veronica Willis.
“She was a daughter of Liverpool and was celebrated and loved by all in Liverpool,” he said.
He told sons, Ben, Robert and Jack: “She was your mum and her death is a private personal matter and we have all got one mum.
“It is right that you grieve and remember her.”
The entertainer’s funeral will take place next Thursday at St Mary’s Roman Catholic Church in Liverpool celebrated by the Rt Rev Thomas Williams, Auxiliary Bishop of Liverpool.
Following her funeral, the singer will be laid to rest at Allerton Cemetery, where her parents are buried.
Flag at half-mast
Born Priscilla Maria Veronica White, she first found fame as a singer in the 1960s, with a string of top 10 hits including chart-toppers Anyone Who Had a Heart and You’re My World.
She later married Bobby Willis at London’s Marylebone Register Office in 1969. He died 30 years later.
The former cloakroom attendant at the famed Cavern Club in Liverpool then went on to become the host of TV shows such as Surprise, Surprise and Blind Date.
About 3,195 people signed a book of condolence, which has now closed, at Liverpool Town Hall.
On the day of her funeral the building’s flag will fly at half-mast, a Liverpool City Council spokesperson said.