Tragedy-hit family store Kettley's of Yeadon will stay open

Wharfedale Observer: David Butler and Andrew Collop outside Kettley's, Ivegate, Yeadon David Butler and Andrew Collop outside Kettley's, Ivegate, Yeadon

The owners of a family firm which was hit by tragedy have vowed their business will continue.

Kettley’s furniture store in Yeadon was closed for a week in April after the death of Pauline Butler, 61, who was listed as a company director.

Her estranged husband John Butler, 62 who ran the business with his son, nephew and niece, has appeared in court charged with her murder.

Kettley’s rose to national fame in 2012 when it appeared in the BBC’s The Fixer series in which celebrity consultant Alex Polizzi helped to modernise the firm.

The couple’s niece Nicola Davison stressed the business – which she runs with her brother Andrew Collop and cousin David Butler - would continue to operate as normal despite recent events.

She said: “John has obviously been here a long time but his health had deteriorated and he had taken more of a back seat.”

“We have all been here long enough to know what we are doing and we have very good staff as well.

“We are determined we want to keep the business on - It won’t be run any differently at all.”

John Butler has been described as the owner of the business but Nicola stressed the family members involved in running the company all had their own equal shares in it.

She said the family had been badly hit by Mrs Butler’s death.

“It was such a shock to us all, and we want to thank people for their support,” she added.

“We have had a lot of cards from people – and a lot of sympathy. It is nice to know that people are showing their support.”

She added: “It is a family business so it has been a massive blow, but we are continuing it as normal.” A trial date was set for John Butler, of Larkfield Road, Rawdon, when he appeared over a videolink in Leeds Crown Court at the end of April.

He is charged with the murder of Pauline Butler, who was found dead at a terraced house in Cherry Lea Court, Rawdon, on April14.

A plea and case management hearing have been fixed for July 7, with the trial expected to start on Monday, October 13.

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