TOYS have been unearthed by the search team looking for Ben Needham on the Greek island of Kos.
Experts, including police officers from South Yorkshire, found the metal objects when they were sifting through a mound of earth in the field next to where the 21-month-old year-old from Sheffield was last seen playing.
He was outside the farmhouse his grandparents were renovating when he disappeared in July, 1991.
The search team went to work after it emerged that a builder had been moving earth and rubble on a plot of land next to the Needham farmhouse on the day Ben went missing. The mound of earth was never examined when Ben disappeared.
Ben’s mum Kerry Grist, aged 40, who has travelled to Kos, still believes he was abducted but said she supports the digging if it helps police rule out the theory that the toddler may have been accidentally buried.
Police have revealed that they found fragments of toys when a three metre wide section of the mound of earth was cleared with a JCB digger.
Ben was playing with metal Dinky cars when he vanished.
Det Supt Matt Fenwick, of South Yorkshire Police, who is co-ordinating the search on Kos, said: “We are digging up the soil trying to look for clues, to look for any evidence that might help us to establish what actually happened to Ben.”
The search team is using a ground penetrating scanner - one of only two in the world.
It has also been used on a concrete drive in front of the house the farmhouse Ben’s parents, Eddie and Christine, were renovating.
Kerry Needham said: “Coming to the island knowing the search experts are looking for my son was heart wrenching. I believe that my son Ben is still alive and out there somewhere but I understand that this search needed to be done.
“I am still determined to find my son and I make a plea to anyone watching anywhere in the world who has any information about what happened to Ben to get in touch and try to end my family’s pain and suffering. I will never give up my search until I find out what happened to him.
“I will do whatever it takes to find Ben and let him know the truth of who he really is.”
Eddie Needham, aged 63, has joined the search, which is expected to take ten days.
Det Supt Fenwick said: “It is difficult for him to come back to the scene. He is not comfortable with it but he knows it is something he has to do.”