Following Janet’s EMDR treatment we now know the cause of her terrible nightmares and why she blanked four days of her life in March 1976. This is also the reason she feels she has to leave Ball Beard Farm immediately – with no intention of ever coming back. She plans a farewell supper in the local pub with her best friends – including Mary and me.
16 July 2010
My mother is rushed to hospital, completely out of the blue; she is in intensive care with serious heart problems. The doctors inform me that they can’t give me any ‘false hope’ and are not sure if she will survive the night so, instead of joining Janet and her friends for a ‘last supper’ I sit at Mum’s bedside in the ITU feeling totally shellshocked, not knowing what to think.
Three days later and Mum has turned the corner. My husband and children have just left for our summer holiday in Spain leaving me behind; it was just too complicated to cancel the holiday and there is nothing they can do at the moment so I tell them I will join them in Granada when I’m sure Mum is OK.
Janet is leaving Ball Beard Farm today for good and setting off for the west coast of Scotland with her caravan and five dogs. It is also my 49th birthday; I spend it on my own reflecting on the last seven months.
I realise I can now rewrite Janet’s life story with a proper ending: we know what happened at Ball Beard Farm in March 1976 and we know why Janet has been traumatised ever since.
But something is niggling me. I am exhausted and can’t seem to order my thoughts properly. It was something to do with the interview I had with Stuart Barlow of Derbyshire police and the fact they have never closed the missing person file. I look through my notes for that day in April and find Stuart’s response to my question as to why Fred Handford’s file is still open:
“In this particular investigation there are some aspects which could in due course provide opportunities to further investigate a possible location of a missing person.”
I also remember him saying to me: ‘Keep up, Helen.’ and wondering what on earth he was talking about.