A female priest was found murdered in her home hours before her husband was discovered dead at a local beauty spot in a suspected murder-suicide.
The body of Rev Suzanne Louise Lancaster, 67, was discovered by police at 10pm last night at her home in Talbot Avenue, Roundhay in Leeds, following a tip-off.
The call also raised concerns for the welfare of the man, and shortly afterwards the body of her husband, Roy Lancaster, 54, was found at the foot of Malham Cove - a 260ft limestone, amphitheatre-shaped cliff in north Yorkshire.
West Yorkshire Police have said they are not looking for anyone else in connection with the deaths.
Rev Lancaster, known locally as Louise, was a mother-of-two and grandmother to three, and associate priest at St Edmund's church in Roundhay.
The church's vicar, Rev David Paton-Williams, told of the congregation's “great sadness” at the double tragedy.
He said: “To hear of the deaths of Louise and Roy Lancaster has been a profound shock.
“They were both active members of St Edmund's church and Louise was also a part-time priest; she shared in the ministry here by taking services and helping in other ways, such as taking communion to people in their homes.
“She was a deeply prayerful person who was held in great affection by members of the congregation.
“Although it's a terrible sadness for the church family at St Edmund's, Louise had two daughters and three young grandchildren and at the moment they are the ones who are uppermost in our prayers.”
It is understood the couple's two daughters, one of whom lives in the south of England while the other is believed to reside in New Zealand, have been informed.
Detective Superintendent Simon Atkinson, of West Yorkshire Police Protective Services, said: ”We have been in contact with the couple's family and our enquiries are ongoing. We are not looking for anyone in connection with this incident.”