UK UK - Ruth Wilson, 16, Dorking, 27 Nov 1995

Antonia

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I agree that the date has to have some meaning, and if it does, neither Karen or Ian is telling.

According to this article in The Sun: "Ruth had been told she died after falling down the stairs and breaking her neck, but in October 1995 she went to London to examine her mother's death certificate."

This is just one month before her disappearance—not a year—and this is confirmed by one of Ruth's friends: "Crucially, Catherine revealed that Ruth had found out about her mother’s suicide just before she disappeared. She was devastated. 'Ruth was really troubled,' she said. 'She had so much going on in her head that she was desperately trying to find out who she was. '"

My first thought, then, was: what if the delivery date was exactly one month after she examined the death certificate? But October 29 was a Sunday that year, so I doubt a library or public records place would've been open. (But could she maybe have gone on Friday, October 27, exactly one month before her disappearance?)

Another thought is that maybe the date is connected to the wedding anniversary of her father and stepmother. I've read that they were married "in the last quarter of 1983 in Surrey," i.e., October–December 1983. Maybe October/November 27/29?

I haven't found their marriage certificate, but Nesta's death certificate is public (see below). And I note that it was "certified to be a true copy" (whatever that means) on November 21, 2017—almost exactly two years before Ruth disappeared.

As for the meaning behind the flowers, Catherine agrees that they were a "dark practical joke," adding that they were a "two-fingers up kinda thing." I don't know what to make of that, though. Did Ruth blame Karen for maybe helping to cover up the truth about Nesta's death? But is that something Ian would've told Karen to begin with, like "hey, my first wife committed suicide." If the flowers are connected to Karen and Ian's wedding, could it have been a way for Ruth to slight her father, by addressing the flowers to Karen alone? That would qualify as a "two-fingers up kinda thing" for me.

Did Ruth order the flowers over the phone or in person? How was her demeanor according to the clerk? Was it ever determined to be her SM birthday/anniversary/etc;? When she’s dropped off where was she standing that made the cabbie feel like she was acting strangely? Sidewalk? In street? MOO
I was wondering if there was any significance to the timing of the flower delivery as well, so ordered a copy of the marriage certificate. Ian Wilson and Karen Bowerman were married at The Register Office, Surrey Mid Eastern district on 25 October 1983, so the flowers (delivered on 29 November, I think) don't appear to relate to Ian and Karen's wedding anniversary, but perhaps it was her birthday, or some other significant date.

When they married, Ian and Karen already lived in the cottage in Betchworth where they still live now. The Land Registry shows that they purchased the cottage jointly on 4 October 1983.

This does all seem to have happened very soon after Nesta's death, and very traumatic for Ruth. Her mother died suddenly, then Ruth goes to stay with family, and when she returns it was to a different home and new step-mother? Then, years later, Ruth discovers that she has been misled about why her mother died.

The more I think about Ruth's disappearance, the more sure I am that there are several people who have information which they are keeping to themselves. I do still think and hope Ruth is safe and well somewhere.
 

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Resourceress

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I was wondering if there was any significance to the timing of the flower delivery as well, so ordered a copy of the marriage certificate. Ian Wilson and Karen Bowerman were married at The Register Office, Surrey Mid Eastern district on 25 October 1983, so the flowers (delivered on 29 November, I think) don't appear to relate to Ian and Karen's wedding anniversary, but perhaps it was her birthday, or some other significant date.

When they married, Ian and Karen already lived in the cottage in Betchworth where they still live now. The Land Registry shows that they purchased the cottage jointly on 4 October 1983.

This does all seem to have happened very soon after Nesta's death, and very traumatic for Ruth. Her mother died suddenly, then Ruth goes to stay with family, and when she returns it was to a different home and new step-mother? Then, years later, Ruth discovers that she has been misled about why her mother died.

The more I think about Ruth's disappearance, the more sure I am that there are several people who have information which they are keeping to themselves. I do still think and hope Ruth is safe and well somewhere.
Nice work ! And good info :)

Friends in the recent documentary on Ruth, felt that the flowers were likely more of an "up yours" than a well wished present. Obviously that isn't concrete but they would have known Ruth's character better than us.

I do agree that the change of home and the new step mother would have been super traumatic, and could have all contributed to her unhappiness !
 

Littlegreenlady

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I assumed references to dropping off were used fairly loosely and, most probably, the taxi driver just dropped her at the pub car park where it would be easy to pull in and turn round. Not a lay by in the strict sense but the obvious place. The old quarry is at the base of Box Hill if you follow a straight line from The Tree down the hill toward Brockham (which is next to her home village of Betchworth). It is just on the Box Hill side of the railway line and is now a fishing lake. I think there are additional minor quarry workings in the vicinity of the lake but tree covered and much less significant. At the time the quarry area was searched by both police and sniffer dogs, to no effect. I do not know if the lake was dived but given the commercial fishing use a body would have almost certainly been snagged or detected during maintenance.
I agree about the pub as a meeting place but very little about this case makes much sense apart from the obvious planning involved.
Quarry lakes can be deep with nasty currents. A friend of mine works with a quarry lake where there is an underground stream and they don't know where it leads to. So sadly a search maybe wouldn't have revealed anything

The taxi driver specifically said he dropped Ruth at a bridleway near the pub (star on the map). According to the Ordnance Survey map the only bridleway is virtually opposite the pub and leads east around what could also be quarry to the B2032 road, or south-west towards the quarry marked on OS map (see image). In the 'Vanished' documentary, the entrance to the bridleway (nearly opposite the pub) appears to be the location where they talk to Kay and Roxy.

I don't know exactly where the notes were found, I'm not even sure if the Police have revealed that information. As far as I know, the Police referred to the notes as "farewell" notes, rather than suicide notes, but is that because they weren't suicide notes, or because they want to be careful about how much information about them that they give?

The family and the Police being reluctant to give information or push for more investigation is very frustrating. I watched the documentary again on tv (available on STV catchup), and even that investigation was going on for seven years and they still thought Ruth was happy at home and assumed she was still on Box Hill. Suicide is least likely to me, it seems obviously staged. I just hope Ruth is safe and well somewhere.

The police wouldn't have wanted to refer to them as suicide notes as that would be a decision from the Coroner. And as there is no body I don't know if they would have wanted to have implied suicide
 
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