Police comb Braunton area after the car of missing Barnstaple woman Tracey Topham is found by member of the public

THE search for missing Barnstaple woman Tracey Topham has intensified after her car was found opposite a Braunton art gallery.

Police and search teams have been combing the area around the Elliott Gallery in Hills View since the 46-year-old’s green Ford Focus was discovered in the gallery car park yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon.

The car was spotted by a member of the public who had seen a police appeal in the North Devon Gazette earlier that day.

Now a team of 20 police officers plus the Exmoor Rescue Group and the Croyde Coastguard team are combing the area and the open lands nearby, together with two police dogs and the Exmoor search dog. The helicopter from Chivenor was also deployed to help.

Concern has been growing for Tracey, who suffers with Aspergers and depression, since she disappeared 10 days ago.

She is described as being a white female, five feet three inches tall, medium build with shoulder length fair hair. She was last seen wearing dark coloured clothing and is believed to have also used the name of Stacey James.

Police said her disappearance with no contact was unusual because she used to keep in touch with her parents on a daily basis.

Sergeant Paul Jones, who is leading the inquiry, said the search would continue tomorrow (Friday) and that police were also speaking to Tracey’s friends and family to try and get any new information on where she might be.

They have renewed their appeals for anyone with information concerning Tracey or her whereabouts on 08452 777444, quoting log number 297 of 05/11/10.