Tributes to much-loved mum flood in after Mother’s Day tragedy in South Shields

Forensic teams arrive at the scene after a 24 year old man was been arrested on suspicion of murder, after a woman was found dead at a house on Oak Avenue in South Shields.
Forensic teams arrive at the scene after a 24 year old man was been arrested on suspicion of murder, after a woman was found dead at a house on Oak Avenue in South Shields.

THE Mother’s Day tragedy emerged on Sunday evening for residents in Oak Avenue, South Shields.

A fleet of police cars descended on the area at 8.10pm, with the force helicopter hovering overhead at one point.

We have a grandson aged four and you just can’t imagine what it is like for a child to have a parent snatched away.

Peter Todd

A 23-year-old woman, named by relatives as Melissa Liddle, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The street was sealed off by police, with the cordon still in place throughout the day yestertrday and into the evening.

Forensic officers also arrived at the street yesterday morning to gather evidence.

A neighbour, who asked not to be named, said: “She was a really nice girl and has two children.

“I have lived here for 50 years and it is a nice area. You just don’t ever expect something like this to happen in your own street.

“It is awful that something like this has happened.

Another neighbour said: “The police helicopter was circling around for quite a while and there were police vans all over the street.

“The street was quickly cordoned off.

“It is frightening that something like this has happened.”

Another resident added: “I saw police sirens, flashing lights and police cars all over the street.

“I have never seen anything like that.

“You could tell that it was something serious.

“It is such a tragedy.”

Annette Todd, 53, whose sister is Miss Liddle’s grandmother, says the whole family is ‘devastated’ by her death.

Mrs Todd, also of Oak Avenue, South Shields, says Ms Liddle and Anthony Ross were “childhood sweethearts” who had been together for around eight years.

Mrs Todd said: “We are just devastated by this. She has a brother Liam and a sister Demi.

“She was lovely, so nice and would always help anyone. I remember my son Peter telling me he had dropped his wallet with £150 in on the street and she picked it up and returned it to him.

“That shows you what kind of person she was.”

Her husband Peter, 60, added: “It just doesn’t feel real. Those two children have lost their mother on Mother’s Day.

“We have a grandson aged four and you just can’t imagine what it is like for a child to have a parent snatched away.”

“That is how they will always remember Mother’s Day now. It couldn’t be any worse.”

“There has never been police round or parties at the address. They were a quiet couple and both worked.”

A Northumbria Police spokeswoman said: “Police have charged a man in connection with the death of a 23-year-old woman.

“Anthony Ross, 24, of Oak Avenue, South Shields, has been charged with murder. He will appear before South Tyneside Magistrate’s Court on March 17.

“A 48-year-old man arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender will receive no further police action.”

Social media messages

TRIBUTES have flooded onto the Gazette’s Facebook page following Ms Liddle’s death.

Gemma Goodin wrote “RIP to this beautiful young lady, thoughts go out to her two boys. So sad.”

Rachel Topping said: “Tragic. Some poor woman has had the worst mothers day news.”

Ashleigh Fontaine added: “So sad. Rest in peace to her.”

Danielle Crumbie said: “So so sad rest in peace to a beautiful lady. Love to her and her boys.”

Lesley-ann Burn wrote: “Its a travesty someone so lovely passes away so young. RIP sweetness. Bless your babies and family.”

Leanne Cooper added: “So so sad. Thoughts and prayers to the family and for her children. No mother should die so young and tragic and have her precious children left behind without a mammy.”