Missing mum made plans with sister day before tragic disappearance

Nicola Bulley: Police concerned for missing dog walker

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Mum-of-two Nicola Bulley was reportedly making plans for her future just the night before she went missing, her parents have revealed, as the search enters its seventh day. Ms Bulley’s father broke down as he shared the impact her disappearance was having on their family, as he describes the heartbreaking question her daughters ask him over and over.

Ms Bulley, 45, was last seen walking her Spaniel, Willow, about 9.15am last Friday along River Wyre in Lancashire, while on a business call.

Speaking to the Mirror, Nicola’s mum Dot, 72, revealed that Nicola had been planning a spa day with her younger sister Louise just the day before she went missing – with the pair excitedly picking out what treatments they wanted to get. 

Dot said: “Louise had just booked Ribby Hall because they both had spa vouchers, she had just sent Nicola the night before the treatments. Louise booked it on Friday morning and sent it to Nicola but she never got back to her. They are very close.”

Nicola’s children, who she “lived for”, are also worried about their missing mum, the grandparents revealed.

Grandad Ernest described his heartbreak at hearing the girls – Harriet, nine, and Sophia, six – “sobbing their hearts out” when they were told “mummy is lost”. He added: “We don’t know how long we can keep going before they realise, they think mummy is coming home soon, but if this keeps going on and on I don’t know where we are going to go or what to say to them.”

Ernest broke down as he said: “When I look at the kids I have to go out of the room because I can’t hold it together. “They are asking where mummy is and ‘when is mummy coming home’, it’s so hard, I just don’t know what’s happened.

He added that Nicola had been happy in her job as a mortgage advisor and had a meeting with an important client before she went missing.

Her parents have promised “we will never stop looking for her.”

Nicola has been missing from her home in Inskip, Lancashire, since Friday morning when she was last seen walking her dog. The mum had dropped her daughters at school and left her car parked in St Michaels village, then walked on a footpath along the River Wyre at around 9.15am. 

Just over an hour later, a member of the public raised the alarm with police when they found Nicola’s dog Willow running loose by the river. When police arrived at the scene, Nicola was nowhere to be found – but her phone was left on a bench, still connected to a work conference call.

A major search was launched, involving drones, sniffer dogs, specialist divers and a police helicopter – but no more clues have been revealed.

Nicola’s parents said they must keep getting up and endure “another day of hope”, adding: “We just dread to think we will never see her again, if the worst came to the worst and she was never found, how will we deal with that for the rest of our lives?”

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The couple, who are joint owners of a freight transport company, have split their time between caring for their grandchildren and looking for their own daughter.

Recalling their last conversation with Nicola before she disappeared, Ernest said his daughter had no health problems and was in good spirits enjoying her job. Her mind was great, we picked the children up the Thursday before she went missing, as we do every Thursday. 

“We took them home, Nicola had had a meeting with her boss in Garstang and she said can you stay a bit later because I have an important client coming in on Zoom. We said no problem and stayed. She had done her work and she was very upbeat about getting her mortgage sorted.

“I said we better go now and Nicola came to the front door, and I gave her a kiss and told her I loved her and that was the last conversation I had with her.”

On Monday, Nicola’s long-term partner Paul Ansell, 44, described the situation as “perpetual hell”.

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