UPDATE: Tributes paid to Stowmarket couple found dead at their home

Richard and Sarah Pitkin pictured when they opened their tea shop
Richard and Sarah Pitkin pictured when they opened their tea shop
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A couple who were found dead at a house in Stowmarket have been named locally as Richard Pitkin and his wife Sarah.

Their bodies were found at their property, in Stowupland Street, where they had lived since 2009.

Stowupland Street in Stowmarket were two bodies have been found in a house

Stowupland Street in Stowmarket were two bodies have been found in a house

Neighbours said the couple had four children.

Mr Pitkin ran a carpentry business from the family home while Sarah worked in a nearby charity shop.

A white Vauxhall van was today parked outside the property, marked with as belonging to Richard Pitkin & Son Carpenters and Decorators.

The same company name is printed on an extension to the large brick semi-detached property.

Vases of flowers could also be seen in each of the 11 large cream painted windows which front on to the street.

Richard and Sarah had turned part of their home into a tea room after moving in, but locals say they closed the business down around two years ago.

Today there was very little police presence outside the house, except for a PCSO who could be seen sitting in an unmarked car.

The charity which Mrs Pitkin worked for has given a statement commemorating the ‘energetic character’ who was ‘full of life and joy’.

Rachel Backshall, director of income generation and marketing at St Elizabeth Hospice, said: “We are shocked and saddened to hear of the death of Sarah Pitkin, who was the assistant shop manager in our Stowmarket shop.

“Sarah was a well-loved member of the team and our thoughts and sincere condolences go out to her family and friends.

“Sarah was an energetic character, full of life and joy. She loved the hospice and loved working with the staff and volunteers. She had been with the hospice for four years and made a huge difference during that time. She was imaginative and creative and brought a real sense of fun to the shop.

“She will be sadly missed by us all.”

A neighbour, who did not wish to be named, said: “It is tragic, really tragic. They were a lovely couple.”

She said Mr Pitkin ‘worked incredibly hard’ running his business, adding: “I have lived here 15 years and they arrived shortly after.

“They had a go running the tea room but it didn’t last long.

“He was a decorator and he worked all over the area.

“It is so sad, she was lovely and worked in the local charity shop.”

Officers were called at 1.45pm yesterday (Sunday) to the house.

Their deaths are currently being treated as unexplained and a police investigation into the circumstances is underway.

A spokeswoman for the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust said paramedics were called at 2.10pm.

The service sent a paramedic car and crew to the scene. She said they attempted to save the lives of the man and woman.