The elderly couple found dead in their Cloneen, Co Tipperary residence on Monday, June 20 have been named locally as Nicholas and Hilary Smith, the Press Association reports.

Gardaí confirmed the grim discovery on Monday and said that they were “investigating all circumstances” of the deaths of the elderly couple.

Postmortems conducted by state pathologist Linda Mulligan at University Hospital Waterford on Tuesday were inconclusive, The Guardian reports. Police are awaiting the results of toxicology and other tests.

Reports have emerged that the couple, who has been described as “very private" but also "polite," may have been dead in the residence for more than a year.

On top of being "private," the couple, who was originally from Britain but had been living in Ireland for a number of years, had reportedly expressed that they were planning to move away. As such, no one was too concerned when they hadn't spotted the couple for a lengthy amount of time.

However, the alarm was reportedly raised on Monday when a local noticed cars parked at the back of the couple's house, as well as an overgrown garden. The local contacted a city councillor, who contacted gardaí, who gained access to the property and ultimately made the discovery.

Local Fine Gael councilor Mark Fitzgerald has since told the Irish Times that the situation is a “huge tragedy.” 

Fitzgerald says the community “always look after each other,” but acknowledged “this is just one sequence of events where a couple kept to themselves and let it be known that was what they wanted and when they said they were moving away, it led to the assumption there was nobody living in the house.”

Fitzgerald, separately speaking with Newstalk on Wednesday, noted how the tragic nature of the event has been compounded by the criticism of the rural village as people questioned why nobody had noticed the disappearance of the couple.

"There were varied details to hide the fact that they were in the house," Fitzgerald said.

He said that there has been "utter shock and disbelief" and a "sense of bewilderment" in the community after the discovery.