Concern for missing mother and sons

A PREGNANT woman who vanished 48 hours ago with her two young sons has twice made contact with her partner, police said last night.Louisa Vowles, 26, of Chignall Smealy, near Chelmsford, contacted her boyfriend Tim Andrews, 33, by mobile phone twice on Saturday, said a senior police officer.

A PREGNANT woman who vanished 48 hours ago with her two young sons has twice made contact with her partner, police said last night.

Louisa Vowles, 26, of Chignall Smealy, near Chelmsford, contacted her boyfriend Tim Andrews, 33, by mobile phone twice on Saturday, said a senior police officer.

Police would not reveal what Ms Vowles said when she made contact.

But Chief Superintendent Sue Harrison, who is heading the search, said officers were very concerned for the safety of Ms Vowles - who has a history of depression and is taking medication - and her sons Zach, seven and Logan, six.

Ms Vowles, who is three months' pregnant, vanished after leaving her home saying she was taking the boys to the shops at around 4pm on Friday.

Police said they have information to indicate that she had been in Hampshire and Dorset.

Most Read

But Ms Harrison said it was also possible that Ms Vowles had gone abroad.

She said Ms Vowles had taken clothing and money with her before leaving home.

"We are very concerned about her," said Ms Harrison. "We know she is depressed and she's been receiving some sort of treatment.

"I think her life is quite stressful at the moment and something has happened which has triggered her going missing. We don't know what that is.'

She added: "I would say to her, 'please just contact us'. There is nothing to be fearful of. She is in no trouble at all.

"Our primary concern is for the safety of Louisa and the two boys. And we want to see all three of them safe and well.

"We are using all available resources throughout Essex and through our contacts with police nationally to try and find her.'

Ms Harrison went on: "She made a couple of contacts with her partner on Saturday evening. Since then we have heard nothing.

"We don't know why she had not made contact again. It may be something as simple as she had run out of credits on her phone. But we would urge her to get in touch with someone, someone she trusts, to let us know she is safe and well and to let us know where she is.'

Ms Harrison said Ms Vowles had left in a white Citroen ZX, but it was not known whether she had subsequently parked the car and switched to public transport.

She said Ms Vowles had family links in Essex and had friends in Bournemouth, Dorset where she had grown up.

Ms Harrison urged anyone who might have come into contact with her - staff at service stations, train workers or bed and breakfast or hotel staff - to think whether they have seen Ms Vowles and the two children.

"We need the public to act as our eyes and ears and we need their help,' added Ms Harrison.

"I would urge people to think whether they might have seen Louisa, who is very slim and three or four months' pregnant, with the two boys. Maybe at a service station, maybe on a bus or maybe in a bed and breakfast.

"We don't know where they are and we need to find them.

"Likewise, if anyone has seen their car - Louisa may have left it and it has been parked outside someone's house for the last day - we need to know. The more time passes, the more concerned we become for the welfare of Louisa and her children.'

Ms Harrison said ports and airports had been alerted although there was no evidence to suggest that Ms Vowles had left the country.

She said Ms Vowles was thought to have a passport with her but it was not known whether the children would be able to leave the country on that passport.

She said Ms Vowles had visited Alicante in Spain and officers were making inquiries to see whether she might have travelled there.

Police said Mr Andrews, who is 33, but is not the father of Zach and Logan, was "distraught at his partner's disappearance'.

She said the boys' father who lived in Braintree was also distressed.

Mr Andrews made a direct appeal to his partner on Saturday saying any problems she had could be solved.

Mr Andrews, who has been with Ms Vowles for six months, urged her: "Come home. You are pregnant with our baby and I want us to be together.

"Think of the future we have together. Think of the future Zach and Logan have. You are a good mother, everybody knows that. Please contact us and tell us where you are.'

Ms Vowles is described as white, 5ft 5ins tall and of "very slim' build.

She has shoulder length bleached blonde hair and when last seen, was wearing a black fur-lined jacket, beige skirt and beige knee-length boots.

One of her sons is described as "chubby' and the other "as slim'.

Both were wearing school uniforms - grey trousers and blue jumpers - when they left their home.

Ms Vowles and her children were travelling in a white four-door Citroen ZX, registration K162 WGS. Police want anyone with information to contact a special hotline number: 0870 1566345.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter