Police step up their hunt for colleague's missing father

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THE search for the father of a senior policeman who vanished from his Edinburgh home eight weeks ago has been extended across the country.

Former RAF serviceman Alan Goulden, 64, was last seen in the Maybury Road area on August 30 after he left his home to walk his dog.

Now posters featuring his photograph have been distributed in hotels and bed and breakfast accommodation throughout Scotland in the latest police bid to trace him.

Officers leading the hunt said today they were still "very hopeful" of finding Mr Goulden alive and well, and appealed for further help from the public.

Police colleagues are giving regular updates to his son, Inspector Graham Goulden, 40, who is an officer with Lothian and Borders Police.

Images of Mr Goulden have also been put on Lothian Buses in the Capital in an attempt to try to jog people's memories over potential sightings.

His family are being kept up-to-date on the work of the inquiry team based at Corstorphine Police Station, which remains eight-strong, and they are said to be "trying to get back to some kind of normal life" despite their ordeal.

Fears have been growing over Mr Goulden's safety, as he suffers from diabetes and left his home without insulin on the morning of his disappearance.

Police have carried out searches of the areas around Lauriston Castle, Cramond Island and the River Almond, but failed to find any trace of the missing man.

Specialist search dogs brought from Wales traced Mr Goulden's scent as far as a bus stop outside the Magnet store on St John's Road in Corstorphine.

Inspector Murray Dykes, who is co-ordinating the investigation, said: "This is still a crucial time in the inquiry. We've had a lot of support from the public and senior detectives are currently reviewing the inquiry so far, which should generate further action for us to take.

"It's really about building on the work we've done so far, while welcoming any new information from the public. Obviously, people's memories fade, so we're unlikely to get more sightings of him from the Maybury area around the time he went missing.

"We're still very hopeful of finding Mr Goulden and we would appeal for him to get in touch."

Police issued the posters to hotels and bed and breakfasts in case Mr Goulden took accommodation outside the Capital.

Insp Dykes added: "His family are coping well under the circumstances. They are trying to get back to some kind of normal life, but there's always something that can bring the memory back. Every time the phone rings, they think it might be news.

"I'm in regular contact with Graham to let him know what's happening."

Mr Goulden lives with his partner and also has other relatives in the Capital. He left the RAF around 30 years ago and currently works at a city packaging plant.

He is described as white, 5ft 7in to 5ft 8in tall, medium build, with a ruddy/red complexion and short, light brown hair. He was believed to be wearing a navy blue Nordic-make waist-length jacket, light blue jumper, checked shirt, trousers and brown leather shoes. He is well-spoken with an English accent.

Mr Goulden is well-known in the Maybury area for walking his small white Papillion dog, but does not have the dog with him.