The body of a woman thought to be that of a missing Leeds pensioner has been found in a field in Halifax.
Officers searching for 88-year-old Joyce Bowman, from Halton, were told a member of the public had spotted the body of an elderly woman in a field at Ovenden Wood on Friday at around 9.30am.
It comes a week after the pensioner was reported missing after leaving Leeds bus station bound for Halifax last Friday morning.
Miss Bowman, who lived alone, was known to use her free bus pass every day to take trips across the north.
But friends and family became worried after she failed to attend a service at Christ Church, in Halton, on Sunday and then missed a planned dinner.
Miss Bowman, who had memory problems, was last seen by friends at a church luncheon club in Halton last Thursday.
When relatives visited her house there was unopened mail on the doormat, suggesting she had not been home for at least 24 hours. She had no plans to stay away overnight.
A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said formal identification of the body has yet to take place, while Miss Bowman’s family and the Coroner’s office have been informed of the discovery of the body.
He said: “The death is not being treated as suspicious.”
After the pensioner’s disappearance was reported, police launched what they described as “a wide and far reaching search effort involving multiple police resources”.
The exercise saw specialist search advisors and officers from the police’s operation support unit called in.
The bid to find the pensioner first of all centred around her Halton home, which was combed for clues as to her whereabouts before a police helicopter was dispatched to cover the surrounding areas.
Police released a CCTV image of Miss Bowman when it was established she had used her bus pass to travel on a 508 First Bus service from Leeds to Halifax bus station.
From that point the police helicopter was used to cover the main routes in and out of Halifax.
Earlier this week the pensioner’s family launched an impassioned plea for members of the public to come forward with information as to her whereabouts.
Debbie Bowman, the wife of Miss Bowman’s nephew David, said: “We’re so worried. You don’t want to think the worst but we have to prepare ourselves.
“We just really need to find out what’s happened to her – whether she’s alive or not.”
Miss Bowman had been reported missing once before but on that occasion was found in Colne, Lancashire, within hours.