35th anniversary appeal over missing Irish schoolboy Philip Cairns

35th anniversary appeal over missing Irish schoolboy Philip Cairns

GARDAÍ have urged anyone with information about the disappearance 35 years ago of schoolboy Philip Cairns to come forward.

Philip, 13, disappeared on October 23, 1986 after leaving his home in Rathfarnham, South Dublin at 1.30pm to go back to school after lunch.

After setting out on the short walk along the busy Ballyroan Road to his school, Coláiste Éanna, he was never seen again.

Now, gardaí have urged anyone who felt they couldn't come forward before to get in touch.

'Changing circumstances'

"There may be persons who may have information in relation to Philip's disappearance or Philip's school bag and for whatever reason did not come forward," read a garda statement.

"Following the passage of time and changing circumstances these people may now be in a position to assist us.

"There may be persons, who were young at the time of Philip's disappearance and not in a position to provide An Garda Síochána with information, who may now be able to come forward."

Bag discovery

At the time of his disappearance, Philip was 5' 2" with short, black hair.

When last seen he was wearing his school uniform of a grey jacket with black shoulder corners, grey school trousers, grey shirt and school pullover.

Philip's bag, with some of the books missing, was found six days after his disappearance in a laneway along his route to school.

The laneway, which links Ann Devlin Road and Ann Devlin Drive, had been searched previously, indicating the bag had been put there shortly before it was discovered.

"An Garda Síochána want to reassure anyone who comes forward that they will be treated sensitively and discreetly by investigating gardaí," added the garda statement.

"Even the smallest piece of information, which may seem insignificant, may assist the investigation."

Anyone with information is asked to contact Rathfarnham Garda Station on 01 666 6500, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or any Garda station.