The mound and field to be excavated in Kos

A team from Calendar News, including Primetime cameraman Simon White, have returned to the Greek Island of Kos this week with South Yorkshire Police as they continue their search for Ben Needham who went missing from the island 21 years ago.

Ben’s mother Kerry and grandparents moved from Sheffield to the outskirts of Kos town in the early 1990s. In July 1991 Ben disappeared from outside their home. It was assumed he had been snatched, but investigators have recently decided to excavate land after it came to light that significant building work was happening near to where Ben was last seen.

The South Yorkshire Police are taking a team of experts and cadaver dogs to excavate a mound of rubble and field near to where Ben went missing two decades ago. With state of the art technology, including sonar for bone detection, they will be excavating a rubble pile under which, they fear, the two year old could have been accidentally buried.

Simon filming the South Yorkshire Police and a Greek Mountain Rescue team

After two decades of tireless searching for her son, Kerry is not down heartened by this latest development. She still firmly believes Ben is alive, but also welcomes this line of investigation as an opportunity to eliminate speculation.

In an exclusive interview for Calendar News Kerry said: “In all honesty I’m happy about it. Not happy about the fact they’re going to be digging up ground looking for my son’s bones, but the fact that it’s going ahead, there’s going to be a thorough and proper investigation. I’m just thinking of it as an elimination process”.

Calendar producer Mark Witty and Simon were fundamental in renewing the search for Ben after appearing live on Greek TV on the 20th anniversary of his disappearance. They appealed directly to the public for information about Ben, and generated new leads. They travelled again to Greece to record footage of Kerry meeting with a potential ‘Ben’ – a Greek gypsy boy who had always suspected he could be Kerry’s son. Unfortunately they were not a DNA match, so the search continued.

Duncan Wood and Simon preparing video material

This dig is a first for South Yorkshire Police who have never turned an area of foreign land into a crime scene before. The excavation begins tomorrow and will take at least eight days. Watch ITN News and Calendar News for all the latest developments, or follow us on Twitter @primetime_media

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