Public urged to help police identify a woman who died on M56 near Manchester Airport

GMP is keen to notify the woman's next-of-kin.

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 2nd August 2023

The public are being urged to help police confirm the identity of a woman who sadly died near the M56 earlier this week.

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) has launched an urgent public appeal after officers were called to reports of concern for the welfare of a woman on the Thorley Lane over bridge leading to the Junction 5 slip road on the M56 – which is on the way to Manchester Airport‘s Terminal Two – at around 2:40am on Monday morning (31 July).

Once police arrived, a scene was put in place and that section of the motorway was closed while officers carried out their necessary response – but despite the best efforts of emergency services, the woman sadly died.

Her death is not currently being treated as suspicious, GMP has confirmed.

With the identity of the woman still uncertain, GMP is calling on the Greater Manchester public to get in touch with any information or potential dashcam footage that may help lead to the eventual notifying of her loved ones.


According to GMP, the woman is described as white, 5’3 tall, with shoulder-length mousey brown hair that is straight and greying in places, and her age was estimated to be within in the 40s – 60s region.

She was wearing dark clothing, pink and brown tortoise shell spectacles, a gold-coloured necklace and bracelet with a gold-coloured beaded clasp, and a gold-coloured ring with a knot design on her right ring finger, while another gold-coloured ring on her left ring finger contained a set of clear stones.


The woman was also said to be wearing a patterned brown-coloured headband, and wristwatch with a black leather strap, as well as having her nails painted pink.

The scene of traffic build-up after the section of the M56 was closed on Monday / Credit: Highways England

“We are utilising all enquiries to ensure we find the woman’s next-of-kin, and we hope that a member of the public may be able to recognise her from the description given,” explained Detective Inspector Paul Costello, of GMP’s Trafford district.

“I would ask anyone who may have information, no matter how little they think it is, to please get in touch with us.”


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Anyone with any information is asked to contact GMP on 101 or 0161 856 9677, quoting log number 280 of 31/7/23.

You can also report information on the GMP website.

Featured Image – Wikimedia Commons