Man accused of murdering estranged wife ran TV reality show furniture shop

Murder accused John Butler. Below, Pauline Butler and the crime scene on Cherry Lea Court

Murder accused John Butler. Below, Pauline Butler and the crime scene on Cherry Lea Court

A man charged with murdering his estranged wife is the boss of a well-known family-run furniture shop in Leeds that featured on a reality television show.

John David Butler appeared at Leeds Magistrates’ Court yesterday accused of killing Pauline Butler at a property on Cherry Lea Court in Rawdon.

Ms Butler, 61, died after being found with multiple stab wounds on Monday.

Mr Butler, 62, of Larkfield Road, Rawdon, spoke only to confirm his name during a brief court hearing yesterdat morning.

Flanked by two dock officers and wearing blue jogging bottoms and a blue sweater, he was asked if he understood the charge before being remanded in custody to appear at Leeds Crown Court today, where a further preliminary hearing was expected to take place.

Before his arrest Mr Butler was the director of Kettley’s Furniture in Yeadon.

Established in 1946, the Ivegate shop has been in his family for several decades.

In 2012 it came to national attention when it was the subject of BBC Two show The Fixer, in which businesswoman Alex Polizzi attempted to help revive the firm’s fortunes.

The furniture shop, which has a sister funeral business, was closed yesterday.

An answerphone message said: “I’m afraid our furniture department will be closed until Tuesday, April 22, due to a family bereavement.”

A staff member at the company’s sister furniture shop in Garforth said their store would remain open for the foreseeable future.

The body of Ms Butler was discovered at a house on cul-de-sac Cherry Lea Court at about 12.30pm on Monday after what police said was a suspected “domestic related incident”.

Ms Butler is also listed as a director at Kettley’s.


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