Police launch murder inquiry as friends and colleagues at Northampton salon pay tribute to ‘brilliant’ hairdresser

Tributes have been paid to a hairdresser who worked in Northampton for seven years after he was found dead in his apartment last night.

Ashley Gillard’s body was found in a fourth-floor flat in Trevithick Court, Wolverton, at 11.40pm last night.

Police were called to the address following reports of a fire in the flat.

A Thames Valley Police spokesman said a 25-year-old man had been arrested on suspicion of murder and is currently in custody.

Det Supt Chris Ward from the Thames Valley Police Major Crime Unit said: “A murder investigation is now underway and forensic work is ongoing at the scene. We are at the early stages of our investigation.”

Mr Gillard was a freelance hairdresser, who for the past six months worked at HairCo2 in Wolverton.

He previously worked for Hensmans in Abington Square, Northampton, and had been there for seven years.

Owner Julie Hensman said: “Ashley was a brilliant, talented, award-winning hairdresser.

“He will never be forgotten, he will be sadly missed by us all at Hensmans salons.”

Mr Gillard’s friend, Danielle Katrina Russell,‎ said she was completely shocked and saddened by his death.

She said: “RIP Ashley, you were a lovely genuine person and will be miss by many. Sweet dreams angel.”

Another friend, Emma Tearle‎, said: “Nothing can express the pain I feel right now.

“You were more than my friend you were my brother and for 14 years we have been pretty much inseparable.

“We have had our ups and downs, but we always knew that the other is there when we needed them.

“From the moment I met you, you had a place in my heart, a place that will always remain.