Woman arrested in connection with 30-year mystery of missing man in New Mills

New Police search in 35 year old mystery, Ball Beard Farm New Mills
New Police search in 35 year old mystery, Ball Beard Farm New Mills

Police investigating the disappearance of a man in the New Mills area more than 30 years ago have confirmed that they have arrested and bailed a woman in connection with the inquiry.

Fresh information about the disappearance of farmer Fred Handford came to light last week and on November 2, police arrested a 61-year-old woman and later released her on bail.

New Police search in 35 year old mystery, Ball Beard Farm New Mills

New Police search in 35 year old mystery, Ball Beard Farm New Mills

Details of the arrest had not previously been made public for operational reasons, a spokesperson told the Advertiser.

Officers, supported by forensic archaeologists, excavated land around Ballbeard Farm, off Laneside Road, New Mills, last weekend but no new evidence was found.

The excavations did not last beyond the weekend and police say there are no plans to start excavations again at this time.

Police are still reviewing and surveying the land at the farm.

Mr Handford was aged 56 when he went missing in March 1976.

Investigations at the time are believed to have looked into the possibility that Mr Handford may have become lost in the surrounding countryside or fallen down one of the many pit shafts in the area.

Since Mr Handford’s disappearance, the farm is believed to have moved into different ownership.