Nicole Falkingham, Wife Of Urban Splash Businessman, Found Frozen To Death In Car

The wife of a prominent businessman was found frozen to death in the back of a car, post mortem examination results have revealed.

The body of Nicole Falkingham, whose husband Jonathan Falkingham is the chief executive of property developer Urban Splash, was found on Friday morning by the owners of a Vauxhall Insignia who alerted police.

Mrs Falkingham, 41, from Allerton, Liverpool, had been socialising with the couple the previous evening.

Soon after arriving at the address police also discovered a cannabis factory with about 100 plants.

A man and a woman, both aged 48, were arrested and questioned on suspicion of manslaughter and cultivation of cannabis before being released pending further inquiries.

Provisional post mortem results showed Mrs Falkingham died of hypothermia and acute alcohol intoxication, Merseyside Police said.

Detectives have appealed for witnesses who may have seen her on Thursday night to come forward.

A spokesman for Merseyside Police said: "Detectives believe that Nicole Falkingham had been drinking at The Vinci bar on Allerton Road, with the man and woman who reported finding her in their vehicle, between 3.30pm and 9pm.

"They are believed to have left the premises together.

"Officers would like to speak to anyone who may have been in the bar during that time, or anyone who may have seen Nicole after leaving the bar.

"A home office post-mortem has been carried out to establish the cause of death. The provisional results have indicated hypothermia and acute alcohol intoxication, but this will be subject to toxicology testing before any confirmation will be made."

Thursday night saw freezing temperatures across Liverpool and the rest of the UK.

Police were called to the address at Eastwood, in Otterspool, Liverpool, shortly after 10am on Friday.

Mrs Falkingham's body was in the rear of the black Insignia. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

A police spokeswoman added: "Soon after arriving at the location officers also discovered a cannabis factory with about 100 plants at the address.

"The 48-year-old man and a 48-year-old woman from Aigburth were arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and cultivation of cannabis and have been released pending further inquiries."

Urban Splash, which is based in Manchester, is a leading property developer, having created landmark residential and business properties across the UK.

It is known for transforming derelict buildings and bringing them back into use, most notably the famous Art Deco Midland Hotel in Morecambe, Lancs, and Birmingham's Fort Dunlop.

Bradford-born Mr Falkingham, an architect, was a co-founder of the company, where his wife was formerly a PA.

In a message to staff today, Urban Splash chairman Tom Bloxham said: "I am very sad to say, as some of you have heard, that Nicole Falkingham tragically died on Friday.

"Nicole was known to many of us, when she worked in our Liverpool office and was married to Jonathan.

"She was one of life's great characters and her loss so young is a tragedy.

"Our thoughts go out to Jonathan and Nicole's friends and family at this difficult time.

"It is so sad."

On Thursday night Mrs Falkingham was wearing a black puffa jacket with a brown fur trimmed hood, black leggings and black Hunter wellington boots.

Anyone who may have information which could help Merseyside Police with their inquiries should contact 0151 777 5394 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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