The wife of a former cabinet minister was found dead in the woods near the family home on her birthday

The wife of Conservative former cabinet minister Owen Patterson was found dead in the woods near the family home on his 64th birthday.

The loss of his wife Rose came as a "terrible shock" to the family, Mr. Patterson said in a statement.

"I am very sad to inform you that my wife, Rose, has died at our family home in Shropshire."

“Rose and I have been married for 40 happy years and she is a wise, caring wife, mother, and grandmother.

“His death was a terrible shock to all of us.

"I ask the media to respect the privacy of me and my family during this very difficult time."

West Murcia police said the death is currently being considered unexplained.

A spokeswoman said: 'We can confirm the death of a woman in Woodland near Pant Lane in Sodelt, Ellesmere.

"There is no third party involved at this level". He said the body was found early this morning. '

Mrs. Patterson, 63, is the fourth Viscount Ridley's daughter and president of Entry Racecourse.

The couple were married in 1980 and have sons Felix and Ned, as well as daughter Evie.

Earlier this month, Mr. Patterson had to self-differentiate for a second time, the Border County Advertiser reported.

The 64-year-old was forced to self-isolate in March after showing signs of coronavirus.

In early June, he confirmed on Twitter that some members of his family are now showing Kovid-19 features.

Mr Patterson said he was delaying returning to the House of Commons until his relatives tested negative for the virus.

He tweeted: "I can't vote. It's really frustrating - voting is happening right now.

“I planned the meeting, but the rules are strict rules.

“It is for the health of others - the risk is if you give it to the elderly or to the underlying condition.

"We can all pass it, so we have to be careful."

His post on Twitter on Tuesday read: "I was planning to go back to the House of Commons today, so it was very frustrating - showing potential Covid-19 features to family members - at least until I was myself - unless Will's test results were negative. "

Jockey Club senior steward Sandy Dudgins paid tribute: "It's sad news and our thoughts are expressed to Rose's husband Owen and his family."

“Rose is a wonderful person and involved in many aspects of our game.

"She is a talented president in Aintree, an important member of our Board of Stewards, and has led our Horse Welfare Group. She has enjoyed participating at the grassroots level for many years.

“We greatly appreciate her cooperation and my fellow steers, and I am eager to hear her good ideas on a subject that she is always sensitive to the best course for racing.

"He will be greatly missed for the man he is."

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