SCIENTISTS are analysing muscle tissue from the six-month-old foetus found buried in the grounds of a Sandiway vet surgery.
The 10-inch-long female body, fully preserved in a jar of formaldehyde, was discovered by construction workers at Hollybank Veterinary Centre on Chester Road on March 31.
The foetus, which weighed just 1.5lb, has since been dismembered, as scientists in a North West laboratory attempt to match its DNA to living relatives.
Tests conducted after the jar was unearthed revealed it had been buried since the early 1970s, and Cuddington and Sandiway historian Mark Bevan told The Chronicle a doctors’ surgery was then located on the site now occupied by the vet.
Cheshire police began an investigation after the grim find and said they believe the foetus may have been used as a medical exhibit.
But they say no crime has been committed, as the modern-day offence of ‘concealing birth’ had not been conceived four decades ago when the body was hidden.
Spokeswoman Shelley Williams said the foetus was not ‘viable’ – meaning it would not have survived outside the womb.
It is understood the body is unfit for further medical research and could be incinerated. Living relatives will only be discovered if they have been arrested or interviewed by police since the national DNA database was set up in the early 1990s.
Det Insp Simon Newell, of Northwich CID, said: “There are strict rules in place that govern the disposal of body parts, and we will be seeking guidance from the Coroner’s Office in respect of appropriate action to take.”