A MURDER investigation is under way in Leigh after a woman was found dead in the back garden of a house on Wigan Road.

Police were called to the home shortly after midnight today, Tuesday.

A Home Office post-mortem examination will take place later to establish the cause of death and the woman has not yet been formally identified, but police say she is believed to be in her late 50s to early 60s.

A 57-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder and is being quizzed by detectives.

Det Supt Jon Chadwick said: "This investigation remains very much in its infancy and our inquiries are focused on building up a picture of what happened in the weeks, day and hours leading up to this woman’s death.

"I understand this may cause concern and unrest in the local community.

"Clearly I cannot go into specific details of the investigation but I want to try and reassure residents that at this stage, we are not looking for anyone else in connection with this woman's death and this appears to be an isolated and tragic incident.

"Officers will be both at the house and in the area in the coming days as the investigation progresses so if anyone has either any information, or concerns about what has happened, they can approach an officer and speak to them, in confidence if needed."

A neighbour said: "They kept themselves to themselves. I didn't know anything until I woke up this morning and I hadn't noticed anything strange in the last couple of weeks."

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.