Alice Byrne: Pictures show police operation at Portobello beach as search for missing woman continues

The streets of Portobello are filled with worry and chilling memories of recent and past events, as searches continue to find Alice Byrne who has gone missing from the tight-knit Edinburgh community.

Thursday, 6th January 2022, 7:40 pm

On a cold and overcast Thursday, many concerned residents watched as police meticulously scanned Portobello beach, looking for any clue to young Ms Byrne’s whereabouts.

Hours before, the community had rallied to help find the 28-year-old, but the organised searches were cancelled under police advice.

Shop owners put up missing posters on the high street whilst other residents plastered the appeal across town, hoping for any help to find Ms Byrne, who was last seen at 10am leaving a house on Marlborough Street on January 1.

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Local resident Alex Callaghan puts up a poster near the last known sighting of Alice Byrne on Marlborough Street (Photo: Andrew O'Brien).

"People are generally worried about what’s gone on,” said one local resident, who attended the Portobello Hogmanay beach party.

“I remember thinking how lovely the beach party was – families were there and the atmosphere was really nice.

"To have this on the back of a nice community atmosphere – everyone is really unsure about what’s gone on and are concerned."

Police have so far deployed specialist units to assist in the search, including air support, police dogs and a marine unit.

Police Scotland officers scour the beach at Portobello, Edinburgh as the search continues for missing local woman, Alice Byrne. Alice, 28, went missing the morning after a Hogmanay party on News Years Eve, she was last seen at 10am leaving a house on Marlborough Street (Photo: Andrew O'Brien).

They have also ruled out a connection between the disappearance of Alice Byrne and missing Musselburgh man Dean Conner, despite speculation on social media.

Mr Conner was last seen at around 5pm on Hogmanay in the Links Avenue area of Musselburgh, walking towards the Promenade.

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Resident Alex Callaghan whose friend attended the party Ms Byrne went to was seen putting up posters in the area. He told The Evening News he just wanted to do something to help out.

Police car seen in the Portobello area of Edinburgh during searches (Photo: Andrew O'Brien).

Police believe Alice may have been heading towards the promenade area when she was last seen on Saturday morning.

She is described as white, around 5ft 6in tall, medium sized with short black hair.

She was last seen wearing an orange jacket, black top, black jeans and white trainers, and was carrying a black rucksack.

A photo taken at the beachfront during the police search shows officers finding a black cardigan.

A black cardigan appears to be found as Police Scotland officers scour the beach at Portobello (Photo: Andrew O'Brien).

“It could have been anybody’s but it just shows what the police will have to work through,” a resident said.

Police are urging anyone with any information to get in touch with them.

Chief Inspector Kieran Dougal said: “This is an upsetting time for Alice’s family who are extremely concerned that she has not been in contact with them since Saturday. This is completely out of character for her.

“I would again urge anyone who has seen Alice since Saturday morning, or anyone with information on her whereabouts to contact us as soon as possible.

"If Alice reads this appeal, I would urge us to phone her family, friends or the Police. Contact 101 quoting reference 0647 of 2 January.”

A message from the Editor:

Alice, 28, went missing the morning after a Hogmanay party on New Year's Eve (Photo: Andrew O'Brien).

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