Headteacher of Surrey private school found dead alongside husband and seven-year-old daughter
The head of a prestigious Surrey private school has been found dead at the school alongside her seven-year-old daughter and her husband.
Epsom College head, Emma Pattison, 45, and her husband George, 39, were found dead alongside seven-year-old Lettie.
Ms Pattison has been described as a “wonderful teacher” and a “delightful person” who had a “distinguished career”.
Police were called to the £42,000 per year Surrey school at 1am on Sunday.
Surrey Police said they were treating the deaths as an “isolated incident” and were not seeking a third party in connection to the incident.
In a statement last night a spokesperson for the force explained how the discovery was made.
“In the early hours of this [Sun] morning, Surrey Police was contacted by the South East Coast Ambulance Service to attend a property in the grounds of Epsom College.
“Officers attended at around 01:10am where they, sadly, found the bodies of three people, including a child.
“We can confirm that the bodies found were Emma Pattison aged 45 years, head of Epsom College, her daughter Lettie, aged seven years and her husband George aged 39 years.
“The family’s next of kins have been informed and are being supported by specialist officers.
“An investigation is being carried out to establish the circumstances of their deaths. At this stage, police are confident that this is an isolated incident with no third-party involvement.”
Detective Chief Inspector Kimball Edey added condolences from the force. “On behalf of Surrey Police, my team, and I, I first want to express my sincerest condolences to the friends and family of Emma, Lettie and George, as well as to the students and staff of Epsom College, for their tragic loss,” Edey said.
“I want to give my assurance that we will conduct a thorough investigation into what took place last night and hope to be able to bring some peace in these traumatic circumstances. I would ask that their privacy is respected at this very difficult time.”
Inspector Jon Vale, Epsom and Ewell’s Borough Commander, said: “We’re aware that this tragic incident will have caused concern and upset in the local community.
“While this is believed to be an isolated incident, in the coming days, our local officers will remain in the area to offer reassurance to students, parents, teachers, and the local community. I would like to thank the school and the community for their understanding and patience while the investigation continues.”
Dr Alastair Wells, chair of the board of governors at Epsom College, said the school community has been left in “utter shock and disbelief”.
“Our immediate thoughts and condolences are with Emma's family, friends and loved ones, and to the many pupils and colleagues whose lives she enriched throughout her distinguished career,” Dr Wells said.
“Emma was a wonderful teacher, but most of all she was a delightful person. In time we will commemorate Emma and her family, in the appropriate way, and in line with the wishes of her family.
“But for now, we ask that we are all given the time, space and respect we need to come to terms with this tragic loss.”
Epsom College was named Independent School of the Year 2022 at an annual awards ceremony that celebrates the very best in education and student experience in UK independent schools.
Ms Pattison joined Epsom College as headteacher in September. She was previously head of Croydon High School in south London and deputy head of St John’s School Leatherhead.