THE grim discovery of the decomposing body of a young woman near a river in Bolton is being linked to Edinburgh, it emerged today.
Police are still working to identify the woman – thought to be aged between 18 and 25 – but they believe she may have travelled from the Capital to the north of England.
Greater Manchester officers are working with Police Scotland after they found a train ticket and timetable for the Edinburgh to Manchester Airport route in her pocket.
Pictures of distinctive jewellery found on the body, found near the River Croal last Thursday, have also been released in a bid to identify her.
Police Scotland were unable to comment on the discovery today and could not say whether it was being linked to any active missing person inquiries.
However, Detective Inspector Michael Fraser from Greater Manchester said it was possible the victim was connected with Edinburgh and appealed for anyone with information to get in touch.
He said: “When we searched the body, we found a number of items on her that we hope can help identity her.
“In the pocket of her trousers was a train ticket and timetable for the Edinburgh to Manchester Airport train line.
“We still do not know how she died but our main priority is to find out who she is.
“Extensive inquiries have taken place and we are currently looking at missing person files across Greater Manchester and the rest of the UK. However, so far, we have not been able to identify her and more importantly, inform her family that they have sadly lost a loved one.
“We believe her body may have been there for a few weeks or even months and I would ask anyone who may have seen a woman who matches the description given to contact us.
“Alternatively, do you recognise any of the images or know of someone who owns such items?
“If you do, we are keen to hear from you as the information you supply may help us piece together her final movements and eventually help us to find out who she is.”
The woman is described as probably white and 5ft 2in to 5ft 4in. She wore size 12 clothes and had dark brown or black long hair fastened in a ponytail with a red elasticated bobble.
She also had a number of facial piercings and pierced navel.
Police are hoping in particular someone will recognise the distinctive necklace with a bat pendant she was wearing.
She also had a chain secured to her waist band on which were a four inch pink ‘mini maglite’ style torch, an Aldi shopping trolley token with a black cat on the back, a PNY USB memory stick, a Sandisk 16GB microSD memory card and a Sony Walkman MP3 player.
She was wearing a dark navy blue or black duffle-style coat with fur-trimmed collar, black tight-fitting trousers, a T-shirt with a diamante cat on the front, a black cardigan, and four to four-and-a-half size shin-high 14-hole black Doc Marten boots.
A post-mortem by a Home Office pathologist failed to establish a cause of death.
Anyone with information should contact the police on 0161-856 5599 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.