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Nicola Bulley's friends pay tribute to 'amazing' mum in fundraising appeal

Nicola Bulley’s friends have described her as an ‘amazing’ mum. (PA)
Nicola Bulley’s friends have described her as an ‘amazing’ mum. (PA)

Friends of Nicola Bulley have paid tribute to the “amazing” mum, as the fundraising appeal for her family surpassed £19,000.

Bulley’s body was pulled from the River Wyre in Lancashire on Sunday, more than three weeks after she was last seen on 27 January.

A GoFundMe page was set up on Tuesday – one day after police confirmed that the body was Bulley – and raised over £10,000 in just 24 hours.

Now the fundraising target, which has risen to £25,000, is also close to being surpassed as donations continue to pour in for Bulley’s partner Paul Ansell and their children.

Thanking those who have donated so far, the friends who set up the page also paid tribute to Bulley.

Donations to the Nicola Bulley fundraiser have topped £19k in 48 hours. (GoFundMe)
Donations to the Nicola Bulley fundraiser have topped £19,000 in 48 hours. (GoFundMe)

In an update on the page, they wrote: “We are so grateful for all of the support the fundraiser has received thus far.

“Nikki was the most amazing person and has clearly impacted so many people.

“We are increasing the goal so that we can help the girls and Paul as much as possible.”

Watch: Media watchdog writes to broadcasters over Nicola Bulley concerns

GoFundMe has also confirmed that the page is verified and the money is “for the family of Nicola Bulley”.

They added: “We have worked with the campaign organiser to connect with Ms Bulley's husband, Paul Ansell, who is now been added as the beneficiary on the fundraiser.

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“All funds raised will go to Mr Ansell and his children."

The fundraiser comes as Lancashire’s police and crime commissioner Andrew Snowden said there will be a “full independent review” carried out by the College of Policing into Lancashire Police’s handling of the case.

The location on the River Wyre near St Michael's on Wyre, Lancashire, where police recovered a body during the search for missing woman Nicola Bulley, 45, who was last seen on the morning of Friday January 27, when she was spotted walking her dog nearby, on a footpath along the River Wyre, after dropping her daughters, aged six and nine, at school. Picture date: Sunday February 19, 2023.
The location on the River Wyre near St Michael's on Wyre, Lancashire, where police recovered Nicola Bulley’s body. (PA)

Snowden said the public “understandably feel that there remain questions about the handling of elements of the police investigation, how it was communicated and the decision to release personal information”.

The force said it “welcomes the independent review”, adding that it is “keen to take the opportunity to learn”.

Snowden was speaking after the police watchdog launched an investigation into a welfare check conducted by a Lancashire Constabulary officer at Bulley’s family home days before she went missing.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said it was notified that an officer visited the address to conduct the check on 10 January.

Lancashire Police have faced widespread criticism since went missing – and at a press conference on Monday they did not address the backlash.

PRESTON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 21: Flowers and messages are left at the place where the phone of missing woman Nicola Bulley was found, next to the River Wyre in St Michael's on Wyre on February 21, 2023 in Preston, England. Nicola Bulley disappeared while walking her dog in St Michael's on Wyre in Lancashire, leading to a major search. On Sunday, Lancashire Police recovered a body from the water and on Monday 20 confirmed it was Nicola Bulley's. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)
Flowers and messages are left at the place where the phone of Nicola Bulley was found, next to the River Wyre in St Michael's on Wyre. (Getty)

MPs and campaign groups voiced their disapproval after the force elected to put elements of her private life into the public domain during the search – including her struggles with alcohol and the menopause.

At Monday’s media briefing, police also did not disclose the reasons it had taken 23 days to find her body in the river.

The Information Commissioner’s Office said it has made initial inquiries with the force to understand “the reasoning which led to the disclosure” of Bulley’s personal information.

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“We will assess the information provided to consider whether any further action is necessary,” a spokeswoman said.

Bulley’s family said in a statement on Monday that they can let her “rest now” following the discovery of her body.

They also hit out at the media over "intrusive" reporting, and asked journalists to "leave us alone now".