A newborn baby boy has been found dead in an area of woodland in Hampshire.
Police are now trying to find his mother, who they say may be ‘very frightened’ after going through a ‘distressing experience’.
The child’s death is being treated as unexplained.
He was found just after 2pm today close to Shore Road in Hythe, near Southampton.
Detective Chief Inspector Ross Toms said: ‘I have no doubt this will have been a very distressing experience for the mother of this baby.
‘Our priority right now is to ensure she receives the care and assistance she requires.
‘I want to make a direct appeal to her.
‘You may be very frightened right now and it is vitally important that you make contact with us or someone else.
‘You may not want to contact the police and I understand that.
‘If that is the case, I want to urge you to seek assistance from a healthcare professional or to attend a hospital as soon as possible.’
Police are also urging anyone with concerns about someone who has been pregnant or has recently given birth to get in touch.
Mr Toms added: ‘I would also like to hear from anyone that has CCTV or dashcam footage from Shore Road or Frost Lane and the surrounding area.
‘However insignificant it may seem to you, I would urge you to call us and let us know.’
Anyone with information should call 101, quoting either Operation Verse or the reference 44200084127.
Alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.