A SHEFFIELD woman thought to have been strangled by her husband had refused to leave their home for five years, neighbours say.
Terry Hoyland, aged 68, was taking anti-depressants and is believed to have talked about taking his own life in the weeks before he died.
Friends who live near the couple's house on Severnside Gardens, Woodhouse, say his wife Margaret, 65, was agoraphobic and totally dependent on her husband. She would sit in the car while he shopped and, during one five year period, did not leave the house once, they say.
Mr Hoyland was seen walking their Yorkshire Terrier, Trudy, at 9am on Sunday. A friend said Mrs Hoyland spoke to her sister on the phone at 9.30am and everything was normal. Her body was found by son Stephen at 10am.
Mr Hoyland died after plunging down a stairwell at the Hallamshire Hospital later the same morning.
A neighbour, who asked not to be named, said police had been searching the garden for a dog lead belonging to the couple.
She said: "Terry had been down for weeks, he used to be friendly but you could see he had changed when he was out walking the dog. He used to say hello but towards the end he would blank people.
"He may have killed Margaret thinking she would be unable to cope without him.
"But she has lots of family who would have taken care of her. It's a dreadful situation."
Mrs Hoyland was at first thought to have died of a heart attack. Neighbour Cheryl Tansley, who administered CPR, said she saw no signs of foul play.
But a post mortem examination revealed Mrs Hoyland had been deliberately killed.
Mr Hoyland is understood to have visited daughter Jackie on Sunday morning with a box containing personal items, money and a will. His behaviour left her so concerned she phoned her brother, who made the appalling discovery when he called at his parents' home.
Mr Hoyland drove to Broomhill and parked on Glossop Road before plunging to his death at the hospital.
Police are treating Mrs Hoyland's death as murder.
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