Published: 08:00, 11 January 2018
Hundreds of police officers and search and rescue volunteers have combed woods in a large-scale search for an elderly woman who went missing on New Year’s Day.
About 240 officers have spent more than 1,500 hours scouting vast areas around the home of Gloria Stringer, an 81-year-old from Hollingbourne.
She was last seen in the Hospital Road area at around 11.30pm on Monday, January 1.
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She is white, 5ft 2in, slim with long brown hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing glasses, a fawn coat, blue jogging trousers and black shoes.
Mrs Stringer, who lives with her husband, is described as being very capable, fit, and healthy, and was known to be fond of walking but could sometimes become confused.
Stewart Baird, search manager at Kent Search and Rescue (KSAR), said: “We have had no sightings of her, It’s a very worrying case.
One theory is Mrs Stringer may have tried to take shelter during storm Eleanor. KSAR is also liaising with her family to think of other places she may have gone.
“We can only assume she is hidden in someone’s outbuilding or walked a long distance,” said Mr Baird.
KSAR conducted their search, along with police and London Search and Rescue, from a command vehicle parked at the Park Gate Inn on Ashford Road between Tuesday, January 2 and Sunday January 7.
Police officers have searched woodland with dogs, conducted door-to-door inquiries, distributed posters, and deployed a helicopter to assist in the search.
Chief Inspector Mick Gardner said: “We are becoming increasingly concerned for Gloria’s welfare and urge residents to the south and east of Maidstone to check the areas surrounding their properties.
"In particular, those living and working in Leeds, Otham, Staplehurst, Headcorn, Coxheath, Chart Sutton, Lenham, Langley, Sutton Valence, Boughton Monchelsea and neighbouring villages are asked to check sheds and outbuildings.”
“I would also ask dog walkers and ramblers in rural areas to remain vigilant.”
Anyone who sees Gloria or has information that may help is asked to call Kent Police on 101 or 999 in an emergency quoting 02-0342.
Video: Search for missing Gloria Stringer continues
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