OWEN Paterson, Tory MP and ex-Cabinet minister announced that his wife Rose had been found dead in woodlands near their family home on 24 June.
But who was Owen Paterson’s wife Rose, when did they get married and do they have children?
Who was Owen Paterson’s wife Rose?
Rose Ridley (neé) was born 13 August 1956 and was the daughter of British nobleman Matthew Ridley, 4th Viscount Ridley.
She had three siblings – one older sister, one younger sister and one younger brother.
When her father died in 2012, his viscountcy succeeded to Rose’s only brother, Matthew White Ridley.
Rose has been the chairman of Aintree Racecourse since 2013.
Back in March she vowed that the Grand National would come back “bigger and better than ever before” next year after it was forced to be cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
She wrote in a letter to would-be-guests at Aintree: “The Grand National has been with us for nearly 200 years; it has survived world wars, bomb scares and many other vicissitudes and it will be back again next year, bigger and better than ever before.”
She completed the 1,000km Mongol Derby in 2011, raising £120,000 for charity alongside her husband, Owen.
She was also a Trustee of the Weston Park Foundation and a former Trustee of the National Museums of Merseyside Development Fund.
When did Owen and Rose get married?
Owen Paterson married Rose in 1980 in Stannington, Northumberland.
They lived near Ellesmere, north Shropshire and also had a house in Drome, France.
The former Tory MP and Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has said Rose’s death came as a “terrible shock” to the family.
Mrs Paterson was found dead in woodlands near their family home in Shropshire on 24 June.
He said in a statement: “It is with great sadness that I must inform you that my wife, Rose, has been found dead at our family home in Shropshire.
“Rose and I were married for 40 happy years. She was a wonderful, caring wife, mother and grandmother.
“Her death has come as a terrible shock to us all. I would ask the media to respect the privacy of myself and my family at this extremely difficult time.”
Do they have children?
In their 40-year marriage, Rose and Owen had three children.
The couple have two sons, Felix and Ned, and one daughter, Evie.
Evie, like her father, is a keen horse rider, and won the British Junior Eventing Championships in 2008, aged 16.
She has also represented Great Britain three times in the European Eventing Championships.