A WOMAN has died and a man is in hospital after a double stabbing in Billinge.

Police were called to Upholland Road shortly before 4.10pm this afternoon (Wednesday, May 20).

They have arrested a 36-year-old on suspicion of murder and attempted murder.

A woman believed to be in her 30s was stabbed inside a property and "suffered catastrophic injuries".

Paramedics tried to save the woman but she passed away at the scene.

Police say their investigation is at its very early stages "but it is believed that a man in his 40s who attempted to intervene has also been stabbed".

He is in a serious condition in hospital.

A police spokesman said: "A 36-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder and attempted murder. He remains in custody for questioning."

The scene in Upholland Road, Billinge, Wigan – a short distance from the boundary with St Helens – remains in place whilst investigation work is carried out.

Detective Superintendent Jamie Daniels, of Greater Manchester Police, said: “Firstly our thoughts are with the lady’s loved ones after this absolutely tragic incident.

"We will offer them full support and do all that we can to provide them with much deserved answers.

"Our thoughts also remain with the man who is currently in hospital and receiving treatment. Our specially trained officers will continue to support his family at this difficult time.

“Clearly this investigation is in its very early stages and we are working to ensure that we follow every line of enquiry.

"We understand that this news will likely cause concern among the local community but I would like to stress that at this stage we do believe this to be an isolated incident.

“There will be a higher police presence in the area and I would encourage anyone with any concerns to please speak to these officers who are there to offer support and help.

"I would also urge anyone with information to please get in contact with us as even the smallest detail could progress our investigation significantly.”

Anyone with information should call 101 quoting incident number 1981 of 20/05/20. Reports can also be made to the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously on 0800 555 111.