Body of newborn baby found in Lostock, Bolton

Baby find scene
Image caption The baby's body was found in Ox Hey Lane on Thursday

The body of a baby, believed to be a newborn, has been found in a country lane in Greater Manchester.

The body, which was wrapped in clothing and plastic bags, was found by walkers in the Ox Hey Lane area of Lostock, Bolton, on Thursday afternoon.

A note was also found requesting the baby receives an Islamic burial.

Police said the age, sex or ethnicity of the baby is not known and it is not yet known whether the baby was alive when it was left at the scene.

It is also not yet clear how long the body had been there, but a post-mortem examination is due to take place on Monday.

'Concealed birth'

Police said a man and a woman found the body when they were out walking their dog just before 16:55 GMT.

Ch Insp Carol Martin said it was an "extremely upsetting incident" and urged the baby's parents to contact them.

"I cannot begin to imagine what either parent may be going through and we are very worried about their physical and emotional state," she said.

"It is likely the mother in particular will require some form of medical attention and I want to appeal directly to both parents or anyone who knows them to contact police or visit your GP or local hospital.

"It is vitally important that I stress support networks are in place and are waiting and on hand to help the parents."

She said police had contacted the Bolton Council of Mosques to reach out to the Muslim community through their Friday prayers.

"The answer undoubtedly lies somewhere in the community and I want to ask the Bolton community as a whole whether they know of anyone who may have tried to conceal a birth or who recently have been pregnant but now is without a baby or appears withdrawn, upset or in physical discomfort," she added.

Ch Insp Martin appealed to anyone who uses Ox Hey Lane for running, cycling or walking who may have noticed a pile of clothes or plastic bags in the area recently to contact police.

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