THE search for a missing mum and her three-year-old son has been called off by police.

Ellie Yarrow-Sanders, 26, disappeared with her son Olly Sheridan in July last year mid-way through a family court dispute with her ex-partner Patrick Sheridan, 45.

The court proceedings had been held in private, but Judge Mr Justice Williams made the decision to lift the publication ban on details of the Basildon family in December.

He said he had grave concerns for Olly's welfare and hoped the appeal would help convince Ellie to return home.

Essex Police were also conducting an investigation to find Miss Yarrow-Sanders, but have now confirmed the search for the mum and son has been called off.

A spokesman said: "We are no longer looking for Olly Sheridan or (his mother) Ellie Yarrow-Sanders, who were reported missing from Basildon in July 2018."

When asked why the search had been terminated, the spokesman declined to comment further.

A friend of the Yarrow family who has acted as a spokesman, also stated the family would not comment.

The Echo previously reported that Miss Yarrow-Sanders was "ready to come home".

In a statement which has since been deleted, her sister Maddie Yarrow said Ellie felt "her side would be heard" in future court litigation.

The family previously shared letters from Miss Yarrow-Sanders on social media, in which she stated running away "was the only way" she could protect her son.

Miss Yarrow-Sanders' family also started a petition calling on the Home Office to give her amnesty for all charges in relation to the court litigation, and ensure she will still be able to care for her son and "feel safe enough" to return home.

It went on to receive more than 1,300 signatures.

In February, Mr Justice Williams took to Twitter to urge Miss Yarrow-Sanders to come home, which is believed to be the first time a judge has taken directly to social media to make an appeal.

Patrick Sheridan previously stated he was "sick with worry" about his son, and urged Miss Yarrow-Sanders to "have faith in the justice system".