Garden search proves ‘negative’ in hunt for missing Motherwell woman
POLICE searching for a woman who disappeared 43 years ago have found nothing during an excavation of the garden at her former home.
Ellen Elizabeth Ruffle was last seen in 1969 at her home in Annan Glade, Motherwell.
The 34-year-old primary school teacher, known to friends as Evelyn, was married with two children, then aged four and 18 months.
Officers from Strathclyde Police were today digging up the back garden of the Annan Glade property, but said tonight that the search had “proved negative”.
They also used specialist ground-penetrating radar equipment at the house and garden, but nothing was found.
A spokeswoman said: “An extensive search of the property at Annan Glade, Motherwell has been carried out utilising sensitive search equipment.
“This search has proved negative. An area within the rear of the property was subject to excavation however this has again proved negative.
“The property has now been handed back to the householder, and the police are grateful for the assistance and co-operation provided at this location.”
Further searches will be conducted in the immediate area over the coming days and weeks, the force said.
It stressed that there would be no disruption to local residents.
The spokeswoman added: “This remains very much an active investigation and we would appeal to anyone who has any knowledge of Mrs Ruffle to speak to police.”
Ms Ruffle was born in 1935 in Motherwell. She trained as a teacher at Craiglochart Training College in Edinburgh in 1953-56. She then took teaching posts in Singapore, Bournemouth and various schools in North Lanarkshire.
She was working at Cathedral Primary School, Motherwell when she went missing.
Superintendent Andy McKay said: “It is now over 40 years since Elizabeth went missing and I urge anyone with information, no matter how small, to come forward and hopefully we can provide some resolution to her family.
“I have no doubt that someone has information which can help us to find out what happened to Elizabeth.
“It was completely out of character for her to leave her two small children.
“It may be four decades since Elizabeth was last seen, however my officers are no less determined to find out what happened to her.”
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Tuesday 21 May 2013
Temperature: 7 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 3 C to 12 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: West