Missing man could be in West Sussex

Mark Whittingstall
Mark Whittingstall
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Police concerned for the welfare of a man missing for a month say he could be in Sussex.

Mark Whittingstall, 51, currently lives in Darwin Street, Blackburn, but has lived in Bedford most of his life.

He was last seen in Bedford town centre by a family friend at the end of August, but police believe he could be in this county.

Mark used to live in the town with his parents but on their deaths a few years ago, he moved to Blackburn to be closer to his brother and sister-in-law. He seems to have left there around August 20/21/22 and police enquiries so far have located him in Bedford on August 22, Gatwick airport on August 23, Brighton on August 25, and back in Bedford around August 28.

The family friend who talked to him in Bedford on August 28 said that Mark, normally lively and tidily-dressed, seemed depressed and looked ill and dishevelled. Since then, he has not been seen.

He is a keen train, plane and bus spotter and travels for the purposes of his hobby - but always says where he is going and keeps in touch. His brother is particularly worried about him as it is absolutely out of character for him to disappear and he has no known access to money.

Mark is white, 6ft tall, with grey hair and was wearing black trousers, black parker coat and carrying a small rucksack. He sometimes has problems with his knee and could be using crutches.

“Mark has never gone missing before and his brother is desperately worried about him,” said PC Jayne Klein of the Missing Persons Unit. “He has travelled down to Bedford looking for him and has been round all the obvious places and people in both Blackburn and Bedford.

“We can trace Mark’s movements for a few days at the end of August but after that the trail ends and we now have no idea where he is or how he is managing as there is no money in his bank account and his phone is turned off,” she said.

“If anyone has seen Mark, or he himself sees this, I would like him to know that he is not in any trouble at all, we just need to hear from him to know he’s safe and well.”

If you can help with information about Mark, however small the detail, please contact PC Klein at the MPU on 01234 275134.

Alternatively, contact the non-emergency police 24 hour number 101, text the force control room direct on 07786 200011 or phone or text independent charity Missing People on 116000.