Libby Squire’s mum urges Nicola Bulley’s partner not to give up hope

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The mother of Libby Squire, the young woman found murdered after disappearing in 2019, has urged Nicola Bulley’s partner “not to give up hope” of finding her. Lisa Squire’s daughter was 21 when she disappeared on January 31 in Hull, East Yorkshire, four years ago. Polish butcher Pawel Relowicz was sentenced to life for Libby’s murder after her body was discovered in the Humber estuary seven weeks after she disappeared. Searches for Nicola Bulley, who went missing just days before the anniversary of Libby’s disappearance, have brought back painful memories for Mrs Squire who has reached out to Nicola’s partner Paul Ansell with a moving message.

Mrs Squire told The Sun: “Please don’t give up hope, do what you’re doing. Put one foot in front of the other and hope for that positive outcome. I know how it feels to have that hope every day, to wake up in the morning and think ‘today she’ll come home’, then get to the night-time and think ‘tomorrow, it will be tomorrow’.”

The 52-year-old told the paper it was the “not knowing” that was do difficult and that as time went on police had briefed her that someone might have been involved in her daughter’s disappearance.

Lancashire Police have been working on the theory Ms Bulley, 45, fell into the River Wyre after she vanished on Friday January 27 taking her dog Willow for a walk.

But so far extensive searches of the waterway in St Michael’s on Wyre, Lancs, and downstream towards the sea at Fleetwood and Morecambe Bay have failed to produce any sign of Ms Bulley.

Forensic expert Peter Faulding, who has assisted police with underwater searches, for the mother-of-two told he had discussed possible “deposition sites” with Ms Bulley’s family and friends, and with her partner Paul Ansell.

He said: “I’m talking to the family and obviously have vast experience finding buried bodies. We’ve got to consider all options here, there has been that report of suspicious people hanging around.

“I was frank with Paul and Heather the other day because we need to consider possible deposition sites, we don’t know. I’m not saying the police aren’t doing that and what I don’t want to do is interfere with the police operation. Mine (investigation) will be low key, I will just be looking around for possible deposition sites.”

On Monday, well-wishers continued to leave hand-written “messages of hope” that the 45-year-old mortgage adviser will be found unharmed in the village of St Michael’s on Wyre, Lancashire, where she vanished on January 27 while walking her dog.

The messages, which first appeared on flower-shaped ribbons on Sunday, have been written on yellow ribbons on a bridge over the River Wyre in the village.

Newly-left messages say “hope is the last thing ever lost” and “Nikki, I love you, come home”.

Others reading “we need you home Nicola”, “praying for your safe return” and “I love you” were found tied to the bridge on Sunday.

A large poster with a photograph of Ms Bulley has also been attached to the railings.

As the search for her continues into its 18th day, police have been looking at areas from the river where she vanished to the sea. The search in Morecambe Bay continued into its fifth day as officers on horseback surveyed elevated paths in the village of Knott End-on-Sea on Monday.

On Thursday, police extended the search for her body to the sea after detectives said finding her “in the open sea becomes more of a possibility”.

Meanwhile, officers are still looking for clues near the bench on the riverbank where her phone was found, while still connected to a work call, on the day she disappeared.

Lancashire Constabulary believes she fell into the river Wyre “in a 10-minute window” while walking her springer spaniel Willow on her usual morning walk after dropping her daughters – Harriet and Sophia – at school.

Ms Bulley had logged into a Microsoft Teams call at 9.01am, which ended at 9.30am with her phone still connected to the call. She was seen by another dog walker at 9.10am – the last known sighting – and police traced telephony records of her mobile phone as it remained on a bench overlooking the river at 9.20am.

The device was found by a dog walker at around 9.35am, with Willow nearby. The force says it does not think she came to any harm.

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