MORE friends of Pauline Smith have spoken of their shock at her sudden death nearly two weeks ago.

MORE friends of Pauline Smith have spoken of their shock at her sudden death nearly two weeks ago.

The mother-of-two is at the centre of a murder inquiry after being found dead at her home in Gainsborough Drive, St Ives, on October 27.

Simon Whateley, who runs the newsagents in Constable Road, was friends for many years with Ms Smith, 54, who was also godmother to his son, David.

He said the community was struggling to come to terms with what had happened.

"She was just such a lovely woman - so generous and kind," he said. "She never forgot Christmas presents for David.

"My wife had known Pauline for more than 35 years - she was her best friend.

"Everyone is just so shocked by what has happened. People have been coming in all week to try to find out the news, and they've all been saying what a lovely lady she was."

Mr Whateley and his family had often gone on holiday with Ms Smith and her family, including her children Toby and Charlotte.

He added: "I heard on Thursday when someone said there was police round at Pauline's house, but it's such a tight concentration of houses there that you can't be sure.

"We phoned her mobile and there was no answer. That was very unusual for Pauline."

Mrs Smith was found dead at her home at about 10.30am.

A post mortem examination revealed she had died from compression to the neck, and a team from the Cambridgeshire Constabulary's major crimes department was assigned to the case.