Nicola Bulley‘s concerned family have issued a fresh statement to mark the three-week date since she went missing.
The 45-year-old Lancashire mum-of-two was last seen walking her dog Willow on a riverside footpath on Friday 27 January at around 9:20am, and a huge search effort has been taking place ever since in the area around Garstang Road near the village of St. Michael’s on Wyre.
Both Nicola’s dog and her phone – which was still connected to a work conference call – were found on a bench along the river on the morning she went missing.
Nicola is described as white, 5ft 3ins tall, with light brown shoulder-length hair, and she speaks with an Essex accent.
Lancashire Police says it “remains committed to doing everything we can to find [Nicola]”.
“Our sole focus throughout the investigation has been to find Nicola, to bring her home, and to support her family through the trauma they are experiencing,” Lancashire Police insisted yesterday.
“The most important person in all of this is Nicola.”
The police’s insistence of its commitment to doing everything in their power to find Nicola comes after it was confirmed yesterday that the Constabulary had referred itself to watchdog, the Independent Office for Police Conduct, over contact officers had with Nicola prior to her disappearance.
It also comes after it was revealed earlier this week that Nicola was considered to be ‘high-risk’ at the time of her disappearance.
Police chose to state that the ‘high-risk’ classification was due to the missing woman having “significant issues with alcohol”, and the fact she was struggling with side effects of the perimenopause and menopausal symptoms.
Nicola’s family say they were “aware” ahead of time that the police were going to release such information, but after growing controversy, Home Secretary Suella Braverman has this morning demanded an “explanation” over the force’s decision to reveal details of her private life.
Now, exactly three weeks to the day of her disappearance, Nicola’s family have issued a statement to urge the public that their “focus has to be on finding her”.
Their statement reads: :It has now been three weeks since Nikki went missing.
“We, as a family, believe that the public focus has become distracted from finding Nikki, and more about speculation and rumours into her and Paul’s private life. As a family, we were aware beforehand that Lancashire Police, last night, released a statement with some personal details about our Nikki.
“Although we know that Nikki would not have wanted this, there are people out there speculating and threatening to sell stories about her.
“This is appalling and needs to stop.
“The police know the truth about Nikki and now the public need to focus on finding her. Due to the perimenopause, Nikki suffered with significant side effects such as brain fog, restless sleep and was taking HRT to help, but this was giving her intense headaches, which caused her to stop taking the HRT, thinking that may have helped her – but only ended up causing this crisis.”
“The public’s focus has to be on finding her and not making up wild theories about her personal life,” the family’s statement continued.
“Despite what some media outlets and individuals are suggesting, we are being updated daily and receive support from our family liaison officers.”
Nicola’s family closed out their statement speaking directly to their “wonderful daughter, sister, partner, and mother” directly.
“Nikki, we hope you are reading this and know that we love you so much and your girls want a cuddle. We all need you home. You can reach out to us, or you can contact MissingPeople.org.uk. Don’t be scared, we all love you so very much.
Sir David Jason set for TV return in Only Fools and Horses documentary Christmas special
In a surprise bit of festive news, the only and only Sir David Jason is returning for an Only Fools and Horses Christmas special this December. Lovely jubbly!
The best-loved and most-watched British comedy of all time will be back on our screens in documentary form this festive season, with Del Boy himself David Jason revisiting the iconic comedy character after 20 years he last played him on screen.
While the legendary sitcom was broadcast on BBC back in the day, the highly-anticipated Only Fools doc will be airing on Channel 5 right before Christmas as a special one-off programme.
Looking back on the show’s incredible run on UK screens over seven series and the several ‘Christmas Cracker’ specials, specifically, the latest Only Fools and Horses documentary will see Jason and a number of other guests appearing to chat about the legendary show.
While it’s still unclear how many of the original cast will be appearing, Jason’s on-screen wife Tessa Peake-Jones (Raquel) is confirmed to be appearing along with other special guests including newscaster Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Bendiorm‘s Sherrie Hewson.
Sadly, a full theatrical reunion just isn’t on the cards following the deaths of Roger Lloyd Pack (Trigger), Kenneth MacDonald (Mike the Landlord) and Buster Merryfield (Uncle Albert) in the 30 years since the show ended its run.
Only Fools writer John Sullivan also sadly passed away aged 64 in 2011 and fellow co-star Nicholas Lyndhurst, a.k.a. Rodney Trotter, told Metro: “We can’t. John is no longer with us. John was the driving force of the show and we have also lost quite a few cast members now.
“I don’t think I could do it without them and I certainly couldn’t do it without John. At the risk of depressing everyone, I think the last two times I’ve seen David has been at funerals.”
Simply entitled, ‘The Story Of Only Fools And Horses At Christmas’, the 90-minute special is yet to have its broadcast date fully confirmed but you best keep your eyes peeled on the TV guide — we’ll let you know as soon we do.
Jason, 81, has only just recovered from hip surgery earlier this year, so it’ll be nice to see his familiar grin back on our screens.
Right, we’re off to binge a whole series on UK Gold.
Habas restaurant in Manchester announces shock closure – with huge closing-down discount
Habas, the Middle Eastern restaurant launched by the team behind El Gato Negro, has announced its shock closure.
The subterranean restaurant will be going out with a bang though, promising one last knees-up with a big discount.
Habas will be doing 25% off its entire food and drink menu this New Year’s Eve so that fans of the eatery can raise a glass to the Manchester restaurant.
They’re also hoping that Mancs will raise a glass to new beginnings, teasing a brand new concept.
Habas is located at Brown Street in Manchester city centre and has been serving up its Middle Eastern menu since 2021.
It comes from Mills Hill Developments Limited, the company also responsible for El Gato Negro and Canto, fronted by celebrated chef Simon Shaw.
Habas has stressed that its closure ‘is not forever’ as it announces details of its New Year’s Eve closing down party.
You can ring in the new year with a selection of mezze dishes, sharing platters and small plates, feasting on chicken tagine and traditional tzatziki, all 25% off on Sunday 31 December.
Drinks, too, like the cranberry elderflower martini, blackberry ginger smash and clementine daquiri will be with 25% off.
Simon Shaw, Chef Parton at Mills Hill Developments Limited, said: “As of January 2024, we have made the decision to close the doors of Habas Bar & Restaurant, however we are thrilled to announce that our Brown Street venue has an exciting new concept on the way.
“Throughout December, Habas, will continue serving up the city’s best middle-eastern cuisine, so make sure you pop in and see us. AND on New Year’s Eve, Habas, will be hosting an unforgettable celebration with 25% off food and drinks. We want to rejoice with all of our customers, with one final hurrah!
“We would like to thank all of our guests and reassure Habas fans that this is not the end of Habas Bar & Restaurant forever, simply a farewell from Brown Street for now.
“We look forward to welcoming you to our new exciting concept in Q1 of 2024.”