14/08/2014 16:57 BST | Updated 20/05/2015 10:12 BST

Parents Of April Jones Dispose Of Her Pink Bike


The parents of April Jones have revealed that they have disposed of the pink bicycle that became such a poignant image as the nation searched for the murdered five-year-old.

April was riding the bike on the day Mark Bridger snatched her in October 2012, but its association with their daughter's disappearance has become so painful that Coral and Paul Jones have now got rid of it.

In an exclusive interview with the Daily Mail, Paul said: "Some of April's things we'll always keep. Her Jack and Jill house, her favourite teddies; the cuddly dolphin she won at a theme park.

"But we didn't want the bike. All the happy memories we had of it were obliterated when she went missing."

Describing their mischievous, energetic daughter, Paul added: "She was a bright little button, full of mischief and energy; lovable, bubbly; a little devil or diawl bach as they say in Welsh.

"She'd dance in puddles in her pink wellies; she'd slide downstairs on a sleeping bag. As soon as she woke up in the morning, boing! she was off.

"We used to walk up the hill together and take a picnic. Then, when April got tired, her left foot would drag and I'd carry her on my shoulders. But she was a happy girl, even when she was in pain. And she was full-on, always chit-chatting about her day and singing.

"She used to love wearing jeans, but all of a sudden she went all pink and girly. We bought her a little pink bike which she loved, and when she got the hang of riding it, the whole world opened up for her."

It is now eight months since Mark Bridger was sentenced to a whole life term in prison for the abduction and murder of April.

He has consistently refused to say what he did with her body.

Coral said: "Mark Bridger is behind bars, but we are trapped in our own prison, too. We'll carry our pain for the rest of our lives. We'll never be free from it. I cry every day.

"I don't sleep. Sometimes I don't eat for three days at a time. The weight has fallen off me. I've lost two-and-a-half stone since April went.

"On the blackest days I say, 'The cloud has come' and I don't want to live any more. It's only Paul and our other two children that keep me here.

"Everywhere I look in the house, there's something of April's: bobbles for her ponytail with strands of her hair still in them; her crayons, her books, her teddies.

"But she is gone. And he still has life: three meals a day. He's fed and watered. Killing him would be too easy, though: I want him to suffer pain as we do; as our family does, as our town does.

"He has taken our child, and yet for six months I couldn't believe April was never coming back. I used to leave the back door open all night, just in case she came home. And there are still days when I put out her little pink dish at mealtimes and Paul has to remind me, 'It's only the four of us now'.

"It was almost a year before we were allowed to bury the tiny fragments of bone and ash that were the only bits of April police recovered from Bridger's house, and now I have so much anger in me I don't know where it comes from.

"Sometimes it just flies out. There are no words to describe him. He's the most evil coward. He has no morals of any sort.

"I think he believes he has won some form of victory by withholding the truth about what he did to April. The only thing left to him is to play these mind games with us. But nothing can be worse than what we imagine he did."

Coral, 42, and Paul, 45, are making moves to keep April's memory alive by campaigning to purge the internet of child porn.

They have already met the Prime Minister and they hope to institute April's Law, legislation to prevent depraved images and videos coming up on any internet search engines. They are also supporting the Daily Mail's campaign to block online porn to prevent indecent images from appearing in response to more than 100,000 searches on Google.

Paul said: "We know that Mark Bridger keyed in such words as 'naked five-year-olds' to search for images.

"He downloaded indecent images of children and they fed his obsession. He sourced photos of children that should never be accessible online because they're an open invitation to paedophiles and perverts.

"I believe these images were partially responsible for what happened to April, so they need to be eradicated. Full stop. The Government has to act.

"The internet search engines are the weak link. They should all be compelled, globally, to stop facilitating this. That's why we're campaigning in April's memory and why we support the Mail's campaign.

"Hundreds of thousands of parents have pledged to support us."