‘Murder has monopolised our lives’

Body found at 2 Blenheim Close, Forest Town.

Body found at 2 Blenheim Close, Forest Town.

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A year has passed since the bodies of William and Patricia Wycherley were discovered buried in the back garden of their Forest Town home.

Now, following news that their killers Susan and Christopher Edwards plan to appeal the severity of their 25-year prison sentences, relatives of the reclusive couple have broken their silence.

BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE''Undated handout file photos issued by Nottinghamshire Police of Christopher Edwards, 57, and Susan Edwards, 56, who have been found guilty at Nottingham Crown Court of murdering her parents, whose bodies were found buried in their own back garden 15 years after they disappeared. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Friday June 20, 2014. See PA story COURTS Bodies. Photo credit should read: Nottinghamshire Police/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE''Undated handout file photos issued by Nottinghamshire Police of Christopher Edwards, 57, and Susan Edwards, 56, who have been found guilty at Nottingham Crown Court of murdering her parents, whose bodies were found buried in their own back garden 15 years after they disappeared. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Friday June 20, 2014. See PA story COURTS Bodies. Photo credit should read: Nottinghamshire Police/PA Wire''NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

In a statement given exclusively to Chad by the Wycherley’s niece Hilary Rose on behalf of herself and her cousin Christine Harford, they describe how the gruesome murders have impacted on the lives of family members.

They describe how the murders and subsequent court case had ‘monopolised their lives’ - particularly after it emerged that relatives had been duped by a 15-year web of lies.

Family members received dozens of letters and Christmas cards between 1998 and 2013, all written by the Edwards, some purporting to be from the Wycherleys, others from Susan Edwards detailing the elderly couple’s foreign travels.

Until the news broke and the press started calling, relatives had believed the Wycherleys to still be alive and well - not viciously slaughtered at their home in 1998.

The coffin of Patricia Wycherley is taken into the chapel at the Mansfield Crematorim on Friday.

The coffin of Patricia Wycherley is taken into the chapel at the Mansfield Crematorim on Friday.

They also described the impact of travelling to Blenheim Close following the Wycherley’s funerals, held quietly at Mansfield Crematorium in July after their daughter Susan (56) and her 57-year-old husband had been jailed for life.

EXCLUSIVE - EDWARDS PLAN SENTENCE APPEAL. Read the full story {http://www.chad.co.uk/news/crime/wycherley-murders-callous-killers-plan-appeal-1-6909899 |CLICK HERE|Click here}

The statement reads: “It is hard to believe one year has passed since William Wycherley and Patricia, our uncle and aunt, were discovered in the garden of number 2 Blenheim Close.

“The events were on our minds a lot this summer, of course during the three weeks of the trial, the sentencing, and the funeral at Mansfield Crematorium, but also for a long time afterwards when we were at home, trying to make some sense of it all. It monopolised our lives.

“After the funeral service, Sue Bramley who now lives in 2 Blenheim Close, invited us to her home to view the scene of the distressing murder, and subsequent burial.

“It seemed a nice idea to take the funeral flowers back there.

“Christine accepted. She found Blenheim Close very pleasant. However, it was a disturbing experience, and she was shocked to see how close the burial site was to the house and the neighbours.

“When it came to going, I just could not face it! I said that if Sue didn’t mind I would visit some time in the future, when events were not so raw.

“She understood and I have great admiration for her determination to remain in her home.

“Life for us is slowly getting back to normal, although we both know that this horrific crime will shadow us forever.

“Susan, our cousin has applied for leave to appeal the length of her sentence as excessive. This shocked me while Christine said she expected it.”

WYCHERLEY FUNERAL. To read the original story CLICK HERE

The Court of Appeal in London has confirmed that the Edwards, who blew more than £285,000 of the Wycherleys’ cash between 1998 and their arrests last November, have applied for leave to appeal their sentences.

Later this month, their case will be reviewed by a Court of Appeal judge, who will decide whether to grant the pair permission to formally appeal against their sentences, on the grounds that they were too severe.

The Edwards had claimed that Patricia Wycherley had murdered her elderly husband in a late night row in the back bedroom of their home, and had then been shot by Susan Edwards, who admitted manslaughter before the trial began.

They had claimed that Susan had then returned to London and brought her husband back to Mansfield the following weekend and told him of the deaths.

He had then agreed to help her dispose of the bodies and joined her in profiting in around £285,000 in benefits, pensions and savings over the next 15 years - finally fleeing to France when they realised the game was up.

But prosecutors said that the Edwards had concocted the plan together - travelling to Mansfield in May 1998 and shooting Patricia (63) and William (85) in cold blood, before burying them in the garden that same weekend.

They said that they were motivated by money and jointly set up new bank accounts, diverting cash out of accounts belonging to the Wycherleys and then closing them down.

EDWARDS JAILED FOR MIN 25 YEARS. To read the original court report CLICK HERE

EDWARDS FOUND GUILTY. To read the original court report CLICK HERE

Christopher Edwards had been a gun fanatic - regularly attending a shooting club in Earl’s Court, until handguns were banned following the Dunblane massacre in 1995. He also owned a ‘38mm revolver, which could have taken the bullets found with the Wycherleys’ skeletal remains.

Susan Edwards had claimed that she had been sexually abused by William Wycherley and killed her mother when she confessed to knowing about the abuse.

Police said there had been no evidence that any abuse had ever taken place but trial judge Mrs Justice Kathryn Thirlwall accepted that she had been telling the truth.

Following the verdict, Detective Chief Inspector Rob Griffin from the East Midlands Major Crime Unit, who lead the murder investigation, said: “Susan and Christopher Edwards had 15 years to come up with an account of what happen that night in May 1998.

In their interviews they didn’t stray from a well rehearsed script, and even used the same words and turns of phrases. I wonder whether they had started to believe their own lies.

“The Edwards’ acted with cold calculation and meticulousness, killing and burying in an unmarked grave to be forgotten the people who raised Susan. They then spent the next 15 years exploiting and profiting from it.”

Court of Appeal judges are expected to decide whether to grant the Edwards leave to appeal their sentences in a hearing on 27th October.

PICTURED: Police outside Blenheim Close following the discovery of the Wycherleys’ remains, Susan and Christopher Edwards, and Patricia Wycherley’s coffin being carried into Mansfield Crematorium. Also, a previously unpublished photo of William Wycherley dating from around 1950.