A search for a missing mother and her newborn child has entered its sixth day, with every hotel and B&B in the city of Colchester checked.
Police are concerned that 35-year-old Constance Marten may have financial resources as she comes from a wealthy landowner family.
Miss Marten and her partner Mark Gordon disappeared on Thursday evening after the car they were traveling in broke down on the M61 near Bolton, Greater Manchester, before setting off on foot with their infant son.
The family were last seen in Colchester, and Essex Police have confirmed they have had a number of confirmed sightings around the town.
A search for missing mother Constance Marten (pictured), 35, and her newborn child has entered its sixth day, with every hotel and B&B in the city of Colchester being checked
Constance Marten (left), who is missing with her newborn baby, is descended from wealthy landowners with close ties to the royal family. Police have issued an urgent appeal for help in finding Miss Marten and the baby’s father, Mark Gordon (right)
Yesterday, officers worked through the night to visit every hotel and bed and breakfast in Colchester to determine whether the couple and their baby had recently stayed.
The search continues today and leaflets are being distributed to help members of the public identify Miss Marten and Mr Gordon.
Miss Marten comes from an aristocratic Dorset landowning family with ‘ties to the royal family’. But it is clear that she has not been in close contact with them for quite some time.
She is the granddaughter of Mary Anna Marten, whose godmother was the late Queen Mother. The family owned the Crichel estate in Dorset.
Miss Marten’s great-grandfather was Captain Napier Sturt, the third and last Baron Alington. Her father, Napier Marten, was a page to Queen Elizabeth and gave up the family fortune of £115 million, saying a voice in his head told him to ‘shave my head and go to Australia’.
After her car broke down on the M61 near Bolton on Thursday night, Miss Marten is believed to have been wrapped in a red blanket in Harwich Port, Essex, at 9am on Saturday.
A map showing where Constance Marten has been seen and where the police are looking
The car the couple were in had been bought six days before they went missing.
The vehicle broke down near junction four of the M61 near Farnworth on 5 January and they left the motorway by walking to the Anchor Lane bridge, which links the Highfield and Little Hulton areas.
There is evidence that Ms. Marten only recently gave birth to the couple’s child and has not been evaluated by medical professionals.
Inquiries from taxi drivers indicate that the couple paid cash to travel first to Liverpool and then to Essex. They later stayed in a hotel with false names. They were spotted around 9am on Saturday morning in Harwich harbor in Essex.
Amid growing concern for their well-being, a CCTV image of Miss Marten wearing a red scarf near Harwich Port was released at 9:00 am on January 7. Police said they were later seen in Colchester and an investigation is underway.
Police statements describe Mr. Gordon as wearing dark clothing, while Miss Marten is said to have a southern accent and wore a burgundy coat. The baby is swaddled.
Constance’s ancestors: Lt. Cdr George Marten with wife Mary and daughters Victoria, Charlotte and Georgina
In a statement, Detective Superintendent Rob Huddleston said: ‘As we have said before, from our perspective this search is about the welfare of the young child.
“We know that some elements of the public may view police involvement as unwelcome and I want to assure you that we do not want to impose ourselves for any reason other than to ensure that the newborn baby is alive and well.”
He added: ‘As a parent myself, I know the bond a father and mother have with their child, but I would call directly on Mark and Constance to put their child’s welfare first.
“For you, Constance, medical professionals should still evaluate your baby to make sure he or she is medically okay and that there are no underlying issues that he or she may need help with. Indeed, medical professionals want to examine you for the same reasons.
“Please, get in touch as you please. We’re here and ready to help.” Anyone with information is urged to call 911 immediately.