'Cruel murder of our graceful girl'

Family's tribute to 25-year-old stabbed to death at Harrow as police arrest injured man in hospital
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The Independent Online

The parents of a woman murdered close to one of Britain's most exclusive private schools have described her murder as the "cruellest tragedy".

Lucy Braham, whose father is the head of the art department at Harrow school, was found stabbed to death at her family home in Harrow-on-the-Hill on Thursday night.

Yesterday her family described the 25-year-old as "quiet, calm and graceful", and said that the murder "flies in the face of all that is decent".

In a statement, they said: "It is the cruellest tragedy that someone so gentle should have had her life snatched away so senselessly. Her family and friends all miss her terribly."

The family described Ms Braham as a "stunning, beautiful" but modest young woman. "It is an irony that someone so dismissive about her looks, who disliked being photographed, should have her face in every national paper," they said.

Police were called to the Brahams' home at 10.25pm on Thursday after reports of a man being injured, and found Ms Braham and William Jaggs, 22, suffering from serious stab wounds.

Mr Jaggs, who is the son of a design teacher at Harrow, remains in a serious but stable condition in a west London hospital. Ms Braham was pronounced dead at the scene.

In their statement Ms Braham's family said that she had no social connection with her alleged attacker or his friends.

Ms Braham was a fashion graduate and had been designing and making clothes and accessories in her studio at the family home before she was attacked. She had recently returned from a five-week trip to Guatemala and Mexico with an old school friend.

Police are believed to have found a knife at the house, which stands near the entrance to the £25,000-a-year boys' school.

Staff at Millfield School in Somerset, which Ms Braham attended from 1997 to 1999, said they were "very upset" by her death. Len Green, director of art, design and technology, said that he was "devastated" by the news.

"Lucy was a very talented artist," he said. "She was also a lovely, warm, friendly person; a very popular girl. Her smile irradiated any room that she entered."

Ms Braham's maternal grandmother - who did not wish to be named - also paid tribute to her from her home in Bridgwater, in Somerset.

She said: "Lucy was the most beautiful, talented, kind and generous person you could wish to know. She was such a lovely creature that I find it hard to do justice to her in words. I would not want anyone to think ill of her.

"She was a quiet, thoughtful child who channelled all her energy into her creative side and she was starting to produce the most wonderful things."

The family was taking "great comfort" from their religious faith, she said, adding: "Lucy is now at peace. She is no longer suffering."

Police arrested Mr Jaggs in connection with the murder, but have not been able to question him as he remains too unwell.