Briton's daughter caught in Christchurch earthquake

Susan Selway with her father Malcolm Selway Susan Selway recently celebrated her 50th birthday in New Zealand with her father

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The British father of a woman missing after the New Zealand earthquake has travelled to search for his daughter.

Susan Selway, 50, was in the Canterbury Television building in Christchurch hit by tremors earlier this week.

Her father Malcolm Selway had just arrived back in Britain from visiting his daughter in New Zealand when he was told the news about the earthquake.

Mr Selway, 72, from Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire, took the first flight back on Wednesday, to look for his daughter.

His wife Linda Selway said: "It's absolutely awful. Her old office building was condemned after the last earthquake but it wasn't hit this time and if she had been there she would have been alright."

The clinical psychologist, who was in her fourth floor office in the Canterbury Television, had been due to move out of the building and into new premises next week.

Start Quote

We anticipate the worst case scenario”

End Quote Linda Selway Susan Selway's stepmother

Police have already said there was no chance that anyone survived within the collapsed building, where up to 122 people are thought to have died.

The building contained the offices of a local TV station, a nursing school and the King's Education school.

Ms Selway's husband, financial adviser Richard Austin, rushed to her workplace after hearing the news and waited all night with his brother David in the hope of seeing her walk out of the building alive.

Her stepmother, Linda Selway said: "We have not given up hope, we just don't know, we anticipate [this] may be the worst case scenario.

"She's beautiful, gorgeous, lovely and very bubbly. She's the life and soul of the party and is always helping people out. She's the rock of the family."

'Awful news'

She told how her husband had flown to New Zealand earlier this month to celebrate his daughter's 50th birthday and had helped her move into the CTV building.

"He flew back from New Zealand and arrived at the airport to this awful news and went straight back on Wednesday, on the next flight. Susan's youngest sister also flew out last night."

Ms Selway was born in New Zealand to British parents but came to the UK as a teenager to study at The Henley College and then the University of Warwick, where she read psychology.

She returned to New Zealand about 16 years ago to work.

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