Fred West: First look inside cafe cellar at heart of police search for suspected teenage victim

Police have released video footage showing the cellar inside a cafe being excavated by investigators as they hunt for a suspected Fred West victim.

The 30-second clip, which does not have any audio, shows chalk markings on the floor, where police are focusing their search for the remains of 15-year-old Mary Bastholm.

The teenager, who was a waitress at the Gloucester city centre cafe, now called The Clean Plate, disappeared in January 1968.

Police believe serial killer West, who lived close by, may have been a regular at the cafe.

Officers were seen carrying power drills and shovels into the cafe on Wednesday as excavation work began.

It comes after a documentary crew found what appeared to be a blue piece of material buried in an area of the cellar.

Mary was wearing blue clothes when she was last seen at a bus stop on Bristol road on 6 January 1968.

The TV production company had identified a “void” within the floor underneath the toilet in the basement and a cadaver dog indicated there may be something of interest within the cavity.

Forensic archaeologists later confirmed a number of structural anomalies within the cellar and six voids in the floor, which are to be examined.

Serial killer West, who took his own life in prison in 1995, was previously suspected over Mary’s disappearance.

West and his wife Rose West tortured, raped and murdered an unknown number of women over a 20-year period.

Mary’s disappearance in 1968 was at a time when builder West was abducting girls in Gloucester.

The serial killer is claimed to have confessed to killing Mary in conversation with his son, Stephen, but never admitted it to police.