THE mother of missing York chef Claudia Lawrence still hopes she will read letters she has written in the six years since she was last seen.

Last month marked six years since Claudia disappeared from her Heworth home, and her mother Joan Lawrence appeared on a BBC television interview this weekend to talk about how she manages to carry on.

She told presenter Victoria Derbyshire she prayed every night for Claudia, and had written many letters over the years so her daughter could catch up on what had happened in her absence, should she reappear.

Mrs Lawrence said: "I write things that happen each day. She's missed a lot, she's missed her nephews growing up and they're gorgeous and she absolutely adored them. I've kept cuttings, one day she might want to look at them, I don't know.

"I have never given up hope ever. I couldn't go through without the hope that will always be there because we don't know.

"Sometimes this is like a dream and then you think you might wake up one day and she'll be there and say 'Hi mum, I'm back', because that's the sort of thing she would say and I think if I write these down maybe one day she'll look at them."

Mrs Lawrence shared pictures of Claudia as a young girl, and said she thought about her daughter every day, and said the pain was "absolutely awful".

She said: "I just have to have strength and courage to get on though every day but the heartache and the tears never stop.

"Some things are very very difficult to put into words. You're thinking of her 24/7, it never ever goes away, no matter how busy I am it doesn't go away."

To mark the sixth anniversary of her disappearance, North Yorkshire Police released previously unseen CCTV images from the night Claudia was last seen which showed a man walking close to the rear of her home.

Mrs Lawrence said she was happy with the performance of the current investigation, but wondered "if these images were so vitally important, why was it six years down the line before they were shown? It should have been shown at the beginning".

When asked what helped her carry on, she said: "Faith. I couldn't get through without that. It's been tested a lot but I have always had faith no matter what. No matter what happens in life there's got to be forgiveness it's helped to keep me strong and helped to give me courage.

"I don't know where she is or what condition she would be in. I don't know what she would be like psychologically, but I want to hear from her. I have got to be realistic but I will never ever give up hope."