Ashley Wadsworth's family say she 'wanted to see the world' as Essex boyfriend charged with murder

  • Melissa Locke remembers her 19-year-old cousin Ashley Wadsworth.


A Canadian woman who died in Essex had moved to the UK "to see the world", said her family.

Ashley Wadsworth had moved from her home in Vernon in British Columbia last year and was just days away from a return visit to see her relatives before her death, according to her cousin.

The 19-year-old was found dead by police called to a disturbance in Tennyson Road in Chelmsford at around 4pm Tuesday.

Her boyfriend Jack Sepple, 23, has since been charged with her murder and appeared at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday via video-link. He will return there on 7 March.

Ms Wadsworth, a practising Mormon, moved to Chelmsford in November 2021, according to Facebook.

Her social media profile includes many photos of her sightseeing visits in the country, including an “amazing trip to London” with her boyfriend.

Speaking to Canadian television channel CTV, her cousin Melissa Locke paid tribute to her.

Ashley Wadsworth wanted to see the world and travel, her family says. Credit: Ashley Wadsworth/Facebook

She said: "She was loving. She was kind, she always wanted to travel and she did travel.

"She was 19 and she had been already to Quebec for summer. She spoke fluent French, she had been to Ontario, she had she had been to California.

"She loved to travel - she always loved to travel. That was her, she loved it. She was studious.

"She was adventurous. She wanted to see the world, she wanted to travel. She would find any way she could to travel."

Ms Locke said she believed Ms Wadsworth had been planning to return to Canada soon.

"She missed her niece. I know she missed her family," she said.

Ms Locke thanked people for their love and support for the family since news of Ms Wadsworth death on Tuesday.

Her Mormon faith was also important to Ms Wadsworth, added her cousin.

"This is something Ashley pursued on her own, she found this on her own. She was 18, she was figuring out who she was. She found a place that she belonged, that she was happy.

"She was just an adventurous soul, that we are going to miss a lot."

Friends and family of Ms Wadsworth in her home country have also been paying their tributes online.

Writing on Facebook, friend Maleea Ames said: "Thinking of everyone in Vernon today, but most importantly the Wadsworth family. I remember first meeting you when we sat next together in the nail salon talking about life, summer and everything in between.

"You were so incredibly sweet, beautiful and a literal angel."

Another friend Tianna Kowalchuk wrote: "Probably one of the worst feelings is losing your best friend. A best friend is more than a boyfriend, a sibling and even a parent. A best friend is someone you can genuinely tell everything to.

She added: "It’s someone you always feel comfortable around. I’m sorry there wasn’t more I or anyone else could do to help you. But God has you in his hands now, we have you in our hearts forever."

Her sister, Hailey Wadsworth changed her Facebook profile picture to a photograph of her and her sister, captioning it simply: "My angel."

Another friend, Larissa Kontos, wrote: "I’ve been trying to come up with words for hours. I have wrote out a post and then deleted it. Because nothing I say will bring you back.

"I will miss our conversations, you always messaging me [...] I will miss seeing your smile and beautiful face!"