• Murder victim named as antiques dealer Peter Battle.
  • 56-year-old had been dead several weeks when found, police say.
  • One man arrested and being questioned.
  • Rare items had been stolen from victim's cottage.
  • Police have 100-strong team working on case.

THE man found murdered in a rural East Yorkshire bungalow was former York businessman Peter Battle, police have confirmed today.

The 56-year-old was found in his home, Whisker Cottage in Full Sutton, suffering from severe head injuries caused by a blunt instrument.

Rare coins, a computer and silver cutlery may have been stolen from his home since he died, police said today.

Mr Battle was found on the lounge floor last Thursday by police after a friend who had been trying to phone him raised concerns with Humberside Police.

A 26-year-old from Norton in North Yorkshire was arrested last night in Malton and is being questioned at Hull Police Station. Police have until tomorrow to question him, or must apply for more time.

Mr Battle was an antiques dealer and conducted a lot of business via the internet auction site eBay. He had previously run a computer business in Acomb in York and was director for a marketing firm, Barton Trott Battle, based at Clifton Moor.

At a press conference this afternoon, DCI Alistair McFarlane of Humberside Police said Mr Battle may have been dead for several weeks when he was found, and officers are keen to contact anyone who has seen or spoken to him since Boxing Day.

He said more than 100 officers and police staff were working on the case, and officers are searching undergrowth on the road between Full Sutton and the A166.

DCI McFarlane said Mr Battle's his antiques business dealings could be "significant" to his murder, and detectives are liaising with auction houses across the region and with eBay.

DCI McFarlane said a number of items have been stolen from the house but there is no sign of a break-in, and police believe someone may have visited the cottage to remove items since Mr Battle died.

Items which may have been stolen include silver cutlery, rare coins, sovereign and half sovereign rings, and a black and silver Advent laptop computer.

Anyone who has been offered such items for sale is asked to ohone Humberside Police on 101, even if the transactions turn out to be innocent, as the information could be useful.