OFFICERS looking for missing British diplomat Richard Morris are scaling back their search.

It has now been five weeks since the 52-year-old former ambassador to Nepal and dad of three went missing from Bentley at around 10.30am on Wednesday, May 6.

He was spotted a short while later on Isington Road, Alton, but mysteriously hasn’t been seen since.

Specialist officers have searched more than nine square kilometres of land in their efforts to find Mr Morris.

Alice Holt Forest, including Lodge Pond, the River Wey, the Alton to Farnham railway line and areas surrounding Alton and Binstead have all been combed by officers, assisted by British Transport Police and Hampshire Search and Rescue Service.

Officers have also viewed CCTV footage, conducted house-to-house enquiries and followed several lines of enquiry – all of which has come to nothing.

A keen parkrun member, Mr Morris is a keen runner and is known to frequent Alice Holt Forest and areas surrounding Bentley on his runs.

Chief Inspector Alex Reading said last week: “It has now been 28 days since Richard went missing, and we continue to be very concerned for his welfare. I would however like to reassure the community there is no evidence of foul play.

“We have conducted an extensive search of local woodland, as well as 2km of the River Wey and a large section of railway.

“Although the search phase is being scaled back, our investigation into Richard’s disappearance is ongoing and any new lines of enquiry will be thoroughly investigated.”

Ch Insp Reading added his thanks to Hampshire Search and Rescue and volunteers for their “tireless” search efforts, and the community for their patience and “good information”.

Anyone with information connected to Mr Morris’ disappearance is asked to call 101, quoting 44200160398.