Hunt continues for diplomat, 52, missing 11 days ago

Hunt continues for diplomat, 52, who has not been seen since going for a run near his £800,000 Hampshire home 11 days ago

  • The last confirmed sighting of Richard Morris was at 10.50am on Wednesday, May 6
  • Hampshire Police have asked for dash cam footage from roads he is believed to have been running along
  • He has held a number of high profile positions in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office over a near 30 year career
  • He was the former UK Ambassador to Nepal between 2015 and 2019 
  • Due to begin new role as British High Commissioner to Republic of Fiji in July

The search for a missing British diplomat is still ongoing after he went missing 11 days ago. 

The last confirmed sighting of Richard Morris, 52, was at 10.50am on Wednesday, May 6, in Isington Road, Alton. 

Mr Morris, who has held a number of high profile positions in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), left his £800,000 home in Bentley, Hampshire at 10.30am on May 6.

Hampshire Police have urged drivers to check dash cam footage between 10am and 5pm on that day from roads he is believed to have run along. 

Richard Morris, 52, (pictured) was last seen at 10.50am on Wednesday, May 6, in Alton. He went missing from his home in Bentley that day

These roads include Isington Road and Isington Lane in Alton, Station Road and Blacknest Road in Bentley and The Street and Church Street in Binstead.   

It is believed Mr Morris was running in Bentley on May 6. Officers have been carrying out searches since then in locations he is known to go.  

On Wednesday, a week after he went missing, a Hampshire police search team scoured Alice Holt Woods.  

Mr Morris is between roles and due to take on a new position as British High Commissioner to the Republic of Fiji in July this year.  

Before that, the married father-of-three was the UK Ambassador to Nepal between 2015 and 2019.

The father-of-three was formerly the UK Ambassador to Nepal between 2015 and 2019 (pictured with Prince Harry in 2016)

He has worked in the FCO over a near 30-year period carving out an illustrious career.  

The FCO said: ‘Richard is a much valued and well liked colleague. 

‘We are extremely worried that he is missing and we all hope he will be found safe and well soon.’  

During his time in Nepal, Mr Morris was pictured alongside Prince Harry in March 2016. 

Mr Morris has been deemed ‘high risk’ by the police because of how he went missing.

The police have reportedly been assisted in their search by Hampshire Search and Rescue, dog search and rescue teams, air support, the UK Missing Persons Unit and other agencies, as reported by the Hampshire and iow news. 

On Monday, Hampshire police said: ‘We are now asking residents in the surrounding areas if they could assist by checking sheds, outbuildings and gardens. We would also love to hear from any residents or businesses with CCTV that could help our enquiries.’

Richard Morris and family. He is married to Alison and has a daughter and two sons (pictured)

Mr Morris entered the Foreign and Commonwealth Office via an open competition in 1990. 

He announced on Twitter on November 6, that he’d left his position in Nepal. 

‘My successor will be Nicola Pollitt. I look forward to taking up my next role as British High Commissioner to Fiji and Head of the Pacific Network in July 2020.’   

Mr Morris took up his post in Nepal six months after the devastating earthquake that decimated many parts of the country and claimed some 9,000 lives.

A missing person appeal was launched on Thursday, a spokesman for Hampshire Constabulary said: ‘We’ve been making enquiries but are now turning to you for your help 

According to his biography on the Government’s website, he was born on November 1, 1967 in Droitwich, Worcestershire to a family of teachers and with a younger sister.

Mr Morris (pictured) has been deemed ‘high risk’ because of the circumstances of how he went missing

He married his wife Alison in 1992 and they have one daughter and two sons. In his spare time, Mr Morris enjoys long-distance running, reading, travel, music and spending time with his family. 

Alison was his girlfriend at school. The couple went off to different universities but resumed their relationship in their early 20s.  

 A missing person appeal was launched on Thursday, May 7. 

‘His family are understandably concerned for his welfare,’ said a spokesman for Hampshire Constabulary. 

‘Richard is described as being white, around 6ft tall, with greying hair and a beard. He is also described as having port birth mark on his face.

‘He was last seen wearing a blue long sleeved top with a half zip, black shorts, and blue trainers.

On Wednesday, a week after Mr Morris went missing, a Hampshire police search team scoured the Alice Holt woods in Hampshire

‘If you see him, or think you may have seen him since 10.30 on Wednesday please call us on 101.’

Before his posting to Nepal, he was Head of Pacific Department at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office from 2013 to 2015. 

Between 2008 and 2012, Mr Morris was Consul General in Sydney and Director General Trade and Investment (Australasia).

Prior to his posting Sydney, he was Deputy Head of Mission and HM Consul General at the British Embassy in Mexico City (January 2005 to June 2008). 

Mr Morris went for a run in the Bentley area at around 10.30am last Wednesday and hasn’t been seen since

He has also worked in New York, Ottawa and Bridgetown across a decorated career beginning work in the FCO in 1990. 

He has spoken publicly about being born with a port-wine birth mark.

‘I have a memorable face,’ he told The Telegraph during his posting in Nepal. ‘When I’m among lots of ambassadors, the Brit is the one people remember because of the way I look.’ 

Mr Morris is also a high profile supporter of Changing Faces, a charity that campaigns to break down stigma surrounding visible differences.   

Missing Diplomat Richard Morris’ illustrious career in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Richard Morris was born on November 1, 1967 in Worcestershire.

He studied for a BA Hons in English literature from Aberystwyth University (which included a one-year scholarship to the University of Illinois).

He was awarded an MBA from Aston University. 

He undertook contract work for Touche Ross Management Consultancy as part of his MBA.

He entered the Foreign and Commonwealth Office via an open competition (1990).  

Mr Morris married wife Alison in 1992 and they have one daughter and two sons. 

He has held multiple roles in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office over a nearly 30-year career.  

Assistant Desk Officer, Non-Proliferation and Defence Department (1990 to 1991).

Assistant Desk Officer, Cultural Relations Department (1991 to 1992); undertook a temporary duty to the United Kingdom Mission to United Nations, New York (1993).

Third Secretary (Political), British High Commission, Ottawa (1993 to 1996).

Second Secretary (Political), British High Commission, Bridgetown (1996 to 2000).

Head of Resource Accounting and Budgeting Team (2000 to 2001).

Head of Assistance Group in Consular Directorate in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (2001 to 2004).

Deputy head of mission and consul general at the British Embassy in Mexico City (January 2005 to June 2008).

Between 2008 and 2012 he was consul general in Sydney and director general of trade and investment for the Australasia region. 

Mr Morris was head of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office’s pacific department from 2013 to 2015. 

UK Ambassador to Nepal between 2015 and 2019.

He is due to begin a new role as British High Commissioner to the Republic of Fiji in July 2020.

He is also a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (FCIM) and of the Royal Society for Arts, Manufacture and Commerce (FRSA). 

Source: www.gov.uk 

 

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