POLICE hunting for a young Midland mum who went missing more than 20 years ago will start searching an area of park land.
Teams of scientists will start working on land just off Purcell Road, in Courthouse Green, in an effort to find out what happened to 18-year-old Nicola Payne, who disappeared in 1991.
She was last seen just a few hundred metres away from the area police will search on Tuesday, after leaving her boyfriend’s home in Winston Avenue, Henley Green, to make her way across fields known locally as the Black Pad to the house she shared with her parents and baby son Owen in Woodway Close.
The latest twist to the 20-year investigation comes after police uncovered new information about her disappearance.
State of the art tools will be utilised in the search, with Home Office scientists using “ground X-ray equipment”, police said.
They will be supported by a cadaver dog, specially trained officers and a forensic team manager.
The search is expected to last several days.
Det Chief Insp Matt Markham said the new searches came as a result of new information which was worked up by detectives on the case.
He also appealed for the public to cast their minds back to the day Nicola disappeared.
“I want the local community to think back to 14 December 1991,” he said. “Did they see anything suspicious in this area or where she was last seen near to the Black Pad?
“If they have not previously done so we need them to get in touch.”
A statement from Nicola’s parents John and Marilyn also urged the public to help.
It said: “It has been nearly 21 years since our daughter Nicola went missing. For many years we have suffered not knowing what has happened to her.
“Today demonstrates that there are people still providing vital and important information to the police around her disappearance.
“If there is anyone who has information that will assist the police around this new site or witnessed anything around this location back in December 1991 please make contact with officers.
“We are appealing as a family to find Nicola and give us the closure we deserve.”
Anyone with information call call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.