Police's urgent appeal for murder probe info

DS Howard Millington of GMP appeals for information
DS Howard Millington of GMP appeals for information

Police have launched a desperate appeal for information after the body of a young woman was found.

Detective Superintendent (Det Supt) Howard Millington of Greater Manchester Police (GMP) told media he wanted to anyone who had recently visited Orrell Water Park following the grim discovery there in the early hours of Saturday morning.

Det Supt Millington said he could not rule out the death being sexually motivated but stressed he was keeping an open mind on what had happened.

He also said police were looking into reports that two young women were followed in the area earlier in the week.

A police hunt was launched on Friday evening after a family became concerned their 18-year-old daughter had not returned from college.

Det Supt Millington would not say the two incidents were linked but confirmed the missing woman's relatives were being supported by specially-trained officers.

The woman whose body was found in a secluded location at the water park has not yet been formally identified.

Det Supt Millington urged everyone who had been in the area of the popular beauty spot to get in touch, no matter how small their piece of information was.

He said: "We have dedicated significant resources to this inquiry. We will be leaving no stone unturned.

"We have issued a press appeal and are getting a good response. I would urge members of the public to ring if they have any information.

"Young people like to congregate at the water park, fishermen use the lodges there. If you were there and saw anything you think is not quite right I would like to know about it.

"It may seem insignificant but I would like to make that call.

"Somebody out there knows or suspects who is involved in this. I would appeal to their conscience to come forward and help us get this sorted out.

"This is a big scene, but of particular interest is the location where the young lady was found, on the edge of a field. I would ask the public to stay away from the area.

"I cannot rule out a sexual motivation and as the investigation progresses, including forensic investigations, that is one thing I will be looking at. We are keeping an open mind at this stage.

"There was also an earlier incident involving two women being followed. This was in the same area and whether it is connected or not if anyone has information about it I would like to know about it."

Det Supt Millington confirmed the police are still working to identify suspects.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 0161 856 7103 or 101 or call the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.