Missing mum Gaynor Lord ‘likely entered water’ as police probe gap between last sighting and phone being found

12 December 2023, 15:07 | Updated: 14 December 2023, 13:25

Gaynor Lord has been missing since Friday
Gaynor Lord has been missing since Friday. Picture: Alamy/Norfolk Police

By Jenny Medlicott

Police have said missing Gaynor Lord ‘most likely entered water’ as they continue to investigate the mother’s whereabouts.

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On Monday, three days after Ms Lord went missing, Norfolk Fire and Rescue's water team entered the River Wensum, which runs through Wensum Park.

They are being assisted by the force’s Marine Unit and the Coastguard.

Ms Lord was last seen at 2:35pm on Friday walking along London Street after she left her job at a department store in Norwich before her 4pm finish time.

For all the latest developments on the hunt for Gaynor Lord check out our live blog.

Read more: Missing mum Gaynor Lord ‘likely entered water’ as police probe gap between last sighting and phone being found

In an update issued on Tuesday, police said “the most likely scenario is that Gaynor has entered the water” as they continue their search.

The force said: “Police believe the most likely scenario is that Gaynor has entered the water, and due to the location of where Gaynor’s clothing and possessions were found, this has been an area of focus”.

Norwich Policing Commander, Superintendent Wes Hornigold, said: “Gaynor left work early and didn’t take her normal route home. We haven’t been able to establish why she left early and her disappearance is out of character so we are naturally concerned for her welfare."

Ms Lord 'most likely entered the water', police said.
Ms Lord 'most likely entered the water', police said. Picture: Norfolk Police

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He continued: “There’s no evidence that Gaynor has come to harm and while we have a number of enquiries ongoing, given where her clothing was found and other items, there is a real possibility she has entered the water.

“We’ve been liaising with the National Crime Agency (NCA) who have given advice around specialist underwater dive teams and we’re seeking assistance from forces with this capability. We hope resources will be on the ground later today or tomorrow.

“This is clearly a distressing time for her family. We have specialist officers supporting them and continue to keep them updated of our ongoing work.”

Officers are also investigating a five-and-a-half hour gap between when Ms Lord, 55, was last seen leaving work and when her belongings were found.

A member of the public contacted police shortly after 8pm on the same day the mother-of-three went missing, confirming they had found the mother’s possessions in Wensum Park.

The force has appealed for dashcam and doorbell footage in the area to help piece together what happened in the five-hour window.

Ms Lord is described as being white, 5ft 6ins tall, and was wearing a white shirt and yellow tank top with an olive-coloured coat when she went missing.

She has blonde shoulder-length hair in a bob, police added.

Police are scouring Wensum Park.
Police are scouring Wensum Park. Picture: Alamy

Police said they would like to hear from anyone who may have seen her since she was reported missing. She was last seen in Norwich City Centre on Friday.

A Norfolk Police spokesman said: "Gaynor Lord, 55, was last seen in the city centre on London Street at 2.35pm, heading towards Norwich Cathedral.

"She hasn’t been seen or heard from since. It was established she’d gone missing after items belonging to her, including clothing and jewellery, were found in Wensum Park on Friday by a member of the public who reported the discovery to police.

"Officers were able to identify Gaynor from these belongings and establish she had failed to return home from work that evening.

"Other items, including Gaynor’s mobile phone, have since been discovered in the park and as a result, the park has been closed and a police cordon remains in place today while searches continue by specialist officers."

Norwich commander superintendent Wes Hornigold added: “We are concerned for Gaynor’s welfare and would like to hear from anyone who may have seen her on Friday afternoon when we believe she would have been travelling on foot.

'Following the discovery of her belongings, our search activity is focused on Wensum Park which has been closed to the public to allow us to do this and is likely to be closed for the rest of the day.”

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