Rose West unlikely to revisit ‘horrors of her past’ if interviewed over missing Mary Bastholm

Rose West is unlikely to help investigators if questioned about the disappearance of Mary Bastholm because the convicted killer will not want to revisit "the horrors of her past", her solicitor has said.

Rose’s husband, Fred West, has long been suspected of having killed the schoolgirl, who was 15 when she went missing in 1968.

The serial killer is known to have carried out at least 12 murders – most of them with wife Rosemary.

Police have said they may question Rose, who is serving a whole life term for her role in the murders, after finding "six voids" at a café in Gloucester where Mary, who has never been found, used to work.

But Leo Goatley, West’s solicitor, does not believe it will help.

He said: "I would hope that she is questioned but I just don’t think it’ll get anywhere unless there’s been some major shift in her mindset that would make her volunteer things.

"She’s put a great big wall up and she has this persona of a gentle, kind, ageing lady, who’s not in the best of health, likes her cooking and sewing and keeping out of trouble.

"So, the horrors of her past, I just don’t think she’ll want to revisit."

On Tuesday, police were seen removing objects from the cafe including a number of wooden doors.

Fred West, who took his own life in prison in 1995, aged 53, was a regular at the Clean Plate cafe on Southgate Street and knew Mary through her job as a waitress, police have said.

Many of the Wests’ victims, who were all young women, were found buried in the cellar or garden of their house, but Mr Goatley said he doubts excavating at the site will help reach the truth.

He said: "There have been excavations at other sites both in relation to the Wests and other suspected killings in recent years and despite a great deal of effort, nothing’s been recovered."

When he spoke to Rose West about the missing teenager, she was "very surprised that I’d even mentioned Mary Bastholm" and said it was "before my time".

"I’m absolutely certain she knows something about Mary’s disappearance because Fred and Rose would have discussed everything together," he added.

The investigation began after police were given a photo taken by a production company of what appeared to be blue material buried in one area of the cellar – and Mary was wearing a blue coat when she went missing.

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