A TEACHER from Trowbridge who spent the past 40 years working with orphans in Zambia is believed to have been murdered.

The body of Kaye Townsend, who was born in Dursley Road, was found at the side of a road between Lusaka and Lusaka airport.

It is believed the 74-year-old was beaten to death and his body set on fire in an attempt to destroy evidence.

Family and close friends are being kept up to date with inquiries and it is understood Zambian police have questioned a suspect. Mr Townsend's sister Stephanie, who still lives in Trowbridge, flew to Zambia today, where she hopes to find out more about her brother's death.

Mr Townsend, who never married, grew up in Trowbridge, attending Newtown School and Trowbridge Grammar School.

After studying to become a teacher at King Alfred's College and Exeter University, Mr Townsend went on to do national service. A keen athlete and rugby fan, he then took up a teaching position at the Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, Barnet. In 1966 he moved to Mongu, in Zambia, eventually becoming headmaster of a school, near the Zambezi River, and turned it into one of the best educational establishments in the country.