Latest on human head discovery with links to village near Rushden

The searches in Sharnbrook
The searches in Sharnbrook

Detectives investigating the discovery of a human head at a Cambridgeshire quarry, which police believe has links to a village near Rushden, have confirmed it is male.

Officers from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit (MCU) have been working with specialists from the Natural History Museum and an odontologist since the discovery in May.

Police were called at about 3pm on Monday, May 16, after a worker at the quarry in Mepal made the discovery.

Following the discovery, searches were then carried out at a site in Sharnbrook, a village on the county border near Rushden, as police believe this could be where the remains came from.

More than a month after the discovery and after numerous tests and examinations being carried out, specialists believe the man was aged between 30 and 50 at the time of his death, which could have been as long ago as the 1960s, although experts believe it is more likely to have occurred about 10 years ago.

A post-mortem examination came back inconclusive, and the cause of death remains to be unknown at this stage.

Detective Inspector Jerry Waite, from the MCU, said: “One possible scenario we are looking at is that it may have been a tragic accident whereby the man was hit by a train along the Bedfordshire line.

“We believe the head may have been lodged somewhere along the structure of the bridge in Sharnbrook, and as part of the recent cleaning process, has been dislodged, found its way into the skip and deposited at the quarry in Mepal.

“We have been working very closely with anthropologists at the Natural History Museum in London to establish the age and gender of the deceased, as well as the National Crime Agency’s Missing Persons Database, which unfortunately has not shown any DNA matches.

“I would urge anyone who has any suspicions around who this person may be to contact us.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Major Crime Unit on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or via their online reporting system at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.