THE heartbroken family of a North Yorkshire man who sparked an 11-day search when he went missing are planning to create a special woodland in memory of a “loving husband, dad and granddad”.

Graham Roskell, 65, went missing after leaving Harrogate District Hospital on Saturday, November 3, triggering a massive and urgent search as he had been suffering from a brain condition which led to confusion and disorientation.

Despite the large-scale operation, Mr Roskell’s body was found off York Road in Wetherby, on November 14.

Now, in a poignant tribute to Mr Roskell, his daughter Nicola Sawyer has told of the family’s plans to plant 800 trees in a memorial woodland in the Yorkshire Dales in his honour – as she expressed her thanks to the widespread support she and her family received.

In a family statement, she said: “It is really only when something truly devastating and awful happens that you get to see the true nature of people. During this nightmare roller-coaster we saw the kind and generous side of people from places near and far. Friends, colleagues and complete strangers went out searching, helped us organise search parties, cooked us food, put up posters, and so much more.

“We literally had thousands of messages of support. Although these were dark days for our family, it was good to have the support of so many people helping us to get a man, many did not know, back to his family.”

She said: “We are determined that something good should come out of all of the heartache and efforts of everyone pulling together in a time of turmoil. Our dad was a great lover of nature and the great outdoors, and as such our family is currently working with the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust in order to try and create a new woodland in the Yorkshire Dales in memory of him, but this is also something that we can all enjoy and benefit from.

“Our aim is to get 800 trees, at a cost of £10 each, and we have already made significant headway in reaching that goal. This new woodland should not only serve as a fitting memorial to our dear dad, but also as testament to the kindness, and selflessness of people from all walks of life pulling together to help one family, and one man when it mattered the most.”

To donate, visit or phone the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust on 015242 51002. You need to specify that your donation is in memory of Graham Roskell.