TRIBUTES have poured in for restaurant boss Sue Addis after she was found dead at her home.

The 69-year-old was widely known across Brighton as the driving force behind the success of Donatello’s Italian restaurant in The Lanes and Pinocchios in New Road.

Pinocchios was the first Italian restaurant to open in the city.

Pietro Addis took on the restaurant in 1987 and together with Sue, then his wife, they pioneered a new approach with set two and three course meals.

They asked the council for outdoor seating which helped spark a revival for dining in the area.

The business has gone from strength to strength and she had featured on the Hotels and Restaurant Rich List, with a business worth an estimated £6 million.

Sue had three children, Leo, Stefano, and Mikele, who all continue to have roles in the family run restaurants.

In a brief message on the Donatello Facebook page yesterday, the family said: “We appreciate all the recent messages of condolence and support.”

They asked for their privacy to be respected at this difficult time.

Friends say Sue was a devoted mother and grandmother.

One said: “Her family were her world, and she was theirs.”

Originally she was a talented ballet performer with the Ballet Rambert School and never lost her love for watching dancing.

Sue, a stalwart of the community, was a trustee for The Argus Appeal for more than 20 years, supporting charities all over Brighton and Hove.

She helped support schemes such as the Santa bus, the Christmas grotto, the Snowdogs and Snail fundraisers for the Martlets Hospice in Hove, and Brighton Housing Trust.

Supporters said she always had an eye for the small details and knew how much even small sums could make to good causes most in need.