ributes have been paid to the “wonderful” headmistress of Epsom College who was tragically found dead alongside her husband and young daughter at a property on the school’s grounds.
The bodies of headmistress Emma Pattison, her daughter Lettie, seven, and her husband George, 39, were discovered after Surrey Police were called to the “Independent School of the Year” by paramedics at 1.10am on Sunday.
The 45-year-old had only joined the school in September. She had previously been head at Croydon High School.
The family’s next of kin have been informed and are being supported by specialist officers while an investigation is now under way to establish the circumstances of their deaths.
The force said they are confident this is an isolated incident with no third-party involvement.
Detective Chief Inspector Kimball Edey said: “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.
“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.”
Epsom College was awarded “Independent School of the Year” in October 2022.
Surrey Police said the three deaths have been reported to the coroner.
Dr Alastair Wells, chair of the board of governors at Epsom College, said: “On behalf of everyone at Epsom College, I want to convey our utter shock and disbelief at this tragic news.
“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.
“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.”