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Search teams find missing partygoer's glasses

By Harlow Star  |  Posted: January 02, 2013

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POLICE looking for a man who went missing after an office party three days before Christmas are continuing their search of the River Stort after finding his spectacles.

Edward Gillespie (38) was last seen leaving Henderson’s Bar & Grill at Roydon Marina Village at about 1am on Saturday, December 22.

He had booked to stay overnight at the holiday park’s hotel, but when he failed to return to his home in Luton  his worried relatives reported him missing.

Police began searching the area the following day after finding Mr Gille-spie’s car parked outside the hotel, which is located a few yards from the function suite where the party was held.

His bed had not been slept in and his belongings were still in his room.

The police marine unit, helicopter and other specialist search teams have been scouring the riverbanks and waterways of the Stort throughout the Christmas and New Year period, and on Friday  a pair of Mr Gillespie’s spectacles were found in the marina.

The discovery came a day after a search party made up of Mr Gillespie’s friends discovered the body of missing Stanstead Abbots pensioner Gwyn Morris (88), who went missing from his care home on December 6.

The group were checking the riverbank near Feildes Weir Lock in Hoddesdon when they made the grim discovery.

Mr Gillespie’s friend, Matthew McGrath (37), said: "We thought we saw someone head down in the wate, but it looked like a car seat.

"We called everyone else who managed to turn it over with sticks and I saw it was a body, but I knew it wasn’t Eddie because of his clothes."

Detective Superintendent Luke Collison said the force had not given up hope of finding Mr Gillespie alive and appealed for anyone with information on his whereabouts to come forward.

"It has been 10 days since he was last seen, but we haven’t given up hope on finding Ed and neither should the public," he said. "We still need them to help by contacting us if they see him or find any item of clothing belonging to him.

Officers are continuing to hand out leaflets in the area in a bid to jog people’s memories, and police have now been joined by specially trained volunteers from Essex Lowland Search & Rescue as the search continues.

DS Collison added: "It is a distressing time for his family and friends, especially as it’s New Year and they have to enter 2013 without him.

"Our thoughts are with them, but they know that we and the volunteers from Essex Lowland Search and Rescue are doing everything to find him."

Anyone with any information about Mr Gillespie’s whereabouts should call  Loughton police station on 101.

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