Family pay tribute to ‘lively and caring’ Dunmow man found dead after Newport party

Matthew Vernon with his girlfriend of two-and-a-half years Hannah Clayden.

Matthew Vernon with his girlfriend of two-and-a-half years Hannah Clayden. - Credit: Archant

Tributes have been paid to a 23-year-old Dunmow man who was found dead in Newport following a party at the weekend.

Matthew Vernon’s body was discovered on Bury Water Lane, on Tuesday afternoon, after the police launched an appeal for information about his whereabouts earlier that day.

The Knights Way resident had attended a party in Newport on Saturday night and had not been seen or heard from since.

His parent’s, Dr Gervase Vernon and Sue Vernon, and his girlfriend, Hannah Clayden, have spoken about their loss.

Dr Vernon, from Felsted, said: “He was lively, caring and much-loved by his parents and his older brother Peter.”


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Hannah, 21, of Ross Close, Saffron Walden, who had been with Matthew for two-and-a-half years, said: “I would like to thank everyone for the overwhelming response that I have had. He was loved by a lot of people and I want to make sure people remember his life and how happy he made everyone.”

She added: “He was lovely, he did not stop talking ever – you could never shut him up. He cared about everyone and he was always there. “He loved everyone and did not hate anybody. That was his mission in life, to make sure everyone was OK.”

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According to Hannah, who was at work on Saturday night when the party was taking place, Matthew had asked a friend for a lift home.

However, the last report of him was an answerphone message to the friend around 3am. During the message Matthew is heard repeatedly saying ‘hello’ with music in the background.

The search for Matthew was called off after a body was found. Police say it has not been formerly identified and their enquiries are continuing.

A post-mortem examination is expected to be carried out in the coming days.

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