Fresh appeal for missing Nicola Payne on 21st anniversary

By Steve Carpenter Friday 14 December 2012 Updated: 17/12 11:38

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Buy photos » Marilyn and John Payne continue to appeal for information about their missing daughter Nicola. Picture by Jon Mullis 51.012.003.cov.jm5

THE PARENTS of missing Coventry mother Nicola Payne are appealing for fresh information as police step up their search for two suspects on the 21st anniversary of her disappearance.

Nicola was aged just 18 when she went missing from the Wood End area of the city on December 14 1991.

She had left her boyfriend's house in Winston Avenue to pick up some baby clothes for her seven-month-old son Owen but despite extensive enquiries, has not been seen or heard from since.

Now 21 years on from her disappearance, Detective Inspector Martin Slevin has revealed police are re-appealing for sightings of two men who were seen standing next to a Blue car in the area around the time Nicola went missing.

And both Marilyn and John Payne remain hopeful that this fresh line of enquiry will encourage people of all ages to come forward with information to end their heartache.

"When we first lost her we never thought it would go on for this long and it's been a very long 21 years," Marilyn told the Observer.

"But things they are looking at now seem very positive.

"We know we can't be guaranteed that something will come of it but with the help of people that are generally interested who do know something and are prepared to come forward, then I ask them please do it, please end this heartache.

"It's so important to me to have her found, more than finding out who's done anything. I just need to have her found so we can have a closure and lay her to rest."

The two men who were last seen acting suspiciously by a distinctive metallic blue Ford Capri motor car on the playing fields of Cardinal Wiseman School, near to the "Black Pad" area of Potters Green at approximately 12.15 to 12.30pm on Saturday December 14.

They have been described as white, one being 6" tall, well built wearing a brown leather jacket, while the other was around 6" 3" thin build with short brown hair, a left side parting and was wearing a brown bomber style leather jacket, light hooded sweat shirt and light blue denim jeans.

"We have never eliminated these men from the enquiry and are keen to trace anyone who may have seen them, know them or have any information about them," said DI Slevin.

"John and Marilyn have been unstinting in their determination to learn the truth about what happened to Nicola 21 years ago.

"They endure pain and grief on a daily basis and seeing how they cope and remain positive gives energy to this investigation."

John revealed to the Observer how the blue car has always been in his mind as he continues to struggle to comes to terms with what may have happened to his daughter.

"Although it was seen on the other side of the field, people don't realise they used to race round those fields in their cars and they could have quite easily got to where the footpath was to where the car was seen.

"They keep saying Nicola's probably dead. I just don't like talking in that way, but realistically she wouldn't have gone off - she had no reason to.

"We want people with genuine information to come forward, not people who want to hoax because it just makes the pain a lot harder."

Throughout today (Friday), local neighbourhood officers will be delivering leaflets to the community with details of the appeal for the car and updates and appeals will also be added to the Coventry Police social media accounts.

Anyone with information should contact police at Coventry on 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800555111.

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