Manchester

Bolton baby death: Police hope parents attend funeral

Police officer putting flowers where baby was found
Image caption The baby's body was found in Ox Hey Lane, Lostock by walkers

Police searching for the parents of a baby girl who was found dead on a country lane are hoping they will attend her funeral.

The baby, who was named Alia by police, was found on 14 March in Ox Hey Lane, Lostock, Bolton, by dog walkers.

Det Ch Insp Sarah Jackson said she would "like for the parents to be involved with the funeral" and give Alia "a name that they have chosen".

The funeral will take place on Wednesday at Bolton's Zakaria Mosque.

Investigations into the discovery of Alia found that she had lived for two hours after her birth, but the cause of her death could not be determined as post-mortem examinations and tests proved inconclusive.

Despite appeals, detectives have been unable to find her parents and in April, a Greater Manchester Police spokesman said the force "still need to make sure both Mum and Dad are OK both physically and mentally".

Ms Jackson said the parents "may be aware" of the name police gave to the baby, but that officers "would be really keen to give the baby a name that means something to the parents".

Image caption A message was written on a Tesco bag which the baby was wrapped in

'Help available'

A message written on a bag found with Alia requested an Islamic burial.

The name Alia, which means beautiful, was chosen with the help of Bolton Council of Mosques.

A spokesman for the organisation, which is paying for and arranging the funeral, said there was "help available to Alia's family" to help them through the grieving process.

He said that the parents "may not get another opportunity [to involved with Alia's care] and we don't want you to end up regretting this for the rest of your life".

He added "all communities" were welcome to "attend the burial prayers at the mosque and to pray for Alia".

The service at the mosque on Derby Street will begin at 15:00 BST.

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