Neighbours have revealed the elderly couple were attacked by a burglar who broke into their semi-detached property. The woman who died has been named locally as Freda Walker while her husband Kenneth used to sit on Shirebrook Town Council, representing the Shirebrook Langwith Ward. Mr Walker, a retired mining safety inspector who celebrated his 88th birthday on Thursday (13/1), remains in intensive care with life-threatening injuries. Residents and friends of the couple expressed shock today (Sun). A dog walker, who passes through Station Road every Sunday morning, was a friend of the couple. He said: "This is very quiet area. I was an acquaintance of Kenneth and Freda. They were very nice people. "Kenneth used to be a local councillor heavily involved in the area. "A long time ago, he was the Mayor of Bolsover or Chesterfield I think, one of the two. "They were always a nice couple and ready to speak to you. I spoke to Mrs Walker regularly as I walk the dog through here - more so in the summer. "Yesterday, I had been fishing all day and came home and heard what had happened and my partner told me that there had been an attack in their house. "Then I found out Ken is critical in hospital. It is horrible to hear. "I just knew them as a inviting and lovely couple. I always used to wave at them as I walked by." A neighbour said: "Ken and Freda were devoted to each other. This has shocked everyone who knew them." Another resident said: "We are totally shocked. We didn't hear a thing - nothing. "We didn't know them, we've only just moved to the area ourselves. We didn't even know their names. "It is a really quiet area - odd bit of trouble, especially with living on the main road. But nothing like this. Really sad." A neighbour, two doors down from the couple, said: "I knew of their names because this a close-knit area - everybody knows everybody. "It is shocking and upsetting. I have lived on this street for 53 years. It has been a lovely area to live. It is really sad. "You would see Kenneth and Freda now and again but that was it. This is just shocking." A resident who lived on the neighbouring estate of Primrose Way, said: "The police came to visit me this morning, as they have done with all the neighbours in the estate, just to see if I had heard anything. "I've heard it was a some sort of break-in or burglary there, I didn't know them - never seen them. "I heard this morning that it was an elderly couple and the lady had died. The gentleman is in intensive care. "The police are not revealing much information to use either. We're looking for updates. "It is just shocking - you don't expect to hear something like this happen in a quiet residential estate." Police have cordoned off the couple's home which backs onto several allotments. An alleyway by the side of the house has also been sealed off.
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