The men, women and children missing from home this Christmas

Around 170,000 people are reported missing in the UK every year – almost half of them children. Thankfully most of those who disappear turn up safe and well within 24 hours.

But there are many who don’t. And for family and friends left behind the hurt can be unbearable.

Read more: ‘Schools just don’t have the staff’ to manage children with disabilities and special needs

As loved ones of people who have vanished in Greater Manchester face Christmas without them, the Manchester Evening News highlights the cases of those who have been missing for more than three years currently being circulated by the charity Missing People.

A few of the cases have attracted widespread coverage, like Jordan Ratcliffe who was 16 when he vanished in 2008 after his aunt had dropped him off in the Northern Quarter. But many have had far less publicity. Jordan’s case is one of seven involving children who appear to have vanished without a trace.

The youngest, Elizabeth Ogungbayibi, was just five when she disappeared while visiting relatives in Bradford in 2006. Like many of the cases on our list the exact circumstances of her disappearance are unclear.

All the ages we have given are the ages of the people at the time they went missing.

Missing People’s free helpline 116 000 is open 24 hours a day. It provides practical and emotional support to families and free and confidential advice to anybody who is away from home themselves. The charity’s professional and non-judgmental helpline team can listen, explore options, set up a three-way-call with the police, or send a message home to family members.

Ellen Cross, 50, missing from Manchester since November 3, 1999

Ellen Cross vanished 20 years ago on her way travelling from Manchester to her home in Dublin
(Image: Tom Brown)

Ellen Cross, also known as Cleo, had been travelling back to her home in Ballyfermot, Dublin via Holyhead having been staying with her sister in Middleton for a couple of months. The 50-year-old was seen boarding the train at Manchester Piccadilly on November 3, 1999, but never arrived home.

It is thought she had just £20 in her pocket and no passport when she vanished.

Alex Batty, 11, missing from Oldham since October 10, 2017

Alex Batty

Alex Batty from Fitton Hill, Oldham, went on holiday with his mother Melanie Batty – who did not have custody of him – and granddad David Batty on Saturday, September 30, 2017.

They were due to fly home on October 8, 2017, but never returned. Although officers do not believe he is at risk of harm, they are concerned about his welfare and want to bring him home.

Steven Durand, 31, missing from Salford since October 19, 2018

Missing Steven Durand, 31, was seen at the Bargain Booze store in Bolton Road, Swinton, around 7am on October 20 and at a Premier Store in Agecroft Road, Pendlebury at 11am the same day
(Image: Lancs Police)

Steven Durand was last seen at Bargain Booze on Bolton Road in Swinton at 7am on October 20, 2018, and then around four hours later at the Premier Store on Agecroft Road in Pendlebury.

The 31-year-old, of Preston, Lancs, has cerebral palsy. He is described as 5ft 10in tall, of stocky build with cropped dark hair. He is mixed-race and walks with a noticeable limp.

On October 19, 2018, Steven’s card was used at cash machine in Chorley town centre at 2pm. It is believed Steven travelled by train from Chorley to Manchester later that afternoon.

Ciaron Nuttall, 19, missing from Oldham since March 5, 2011

Contempt of Court Act Notice
Missing Oldham teenager Ciaron Nuttall

Ciaron Nuttall vanished after he stormed out of his house in Royton, following a family row on March 5, 2011.

His phone, bank account and social media accounts have not been used since and despite numerous appeals no information has come to light. He is described as 5ft 9ins tall, of slim build, with short brown hair and has a tattoo on his right hand.

James McEwan, 67, missing from Manchester since November 29, 2011

James McEwan

James McEwan has not been seen since leaving his home in Crumpsall on Saturday, October 29, 2011. He left his Staffordshire bull terrier Bruce and house key behind.

Jimmy, as he was sometimes known, had been discharged from hospital three days earlier after suffering from with a chest infection. He is white, 5ft 9in, slim and usually unshaven.

Ethan Graham, 18, missing from Manchester since February 6, 2012

Ethan Graham

After withdrawing a large amount of money from his bank account, which had been left to him by his grandmother, Ethan Graham, 18, vanished. In the years before he went missing he had been living with his uncle in Manchester following the death of his mother.

He was last seen after taking a taxi to Piccadilly Station on February 6, 2012. In the days before going missing he had changed his appearance, including cutting his previously long hair very short.

Jack Stewart, 69, missing from Rochdale since February 8, 2016.

Jack Stewart

Jack Stewart, 69, was last seen at his home on Ings Lane, Spotland, Rochdale, at about 8am on Monday, February 8, 2016. Police say his disappearance was ‘extremely out of character’ because Mr Stewart ‘liked routine in his life’.

Mr Stewart is white, around 5ft 9in tall, with brown and greying hair cut into a ‘teddy boy’ style. He was last seen wearing a black quilted jacket, black jeans, striped socks and a dark coloured check shirt.

Following his disappearance about 60 members of the public helped police look for Mr Stewart, in a search party from Brotherod Community Centre, close to his home.

Monalisa Zodetsa, 36, missing from Salford since March 18, 2015

Monalisa Zodetsa

Monalisa Zodetsa, 37, was was last seen on Ramsgate Street, in Salford, on March 18. Originally from Zimbabwe, she is black, about 5ft 3ins tall and slim.

When last seen she had her hair in braids and was wearing a black furry coat, blue and yellow jeans, beige trainers and an orange rucksack. Monalisa was known to attend African church groups in the Salford area.

Geoffrey Ralph
(Image: GMP)

Geoffrey Ralph, 75, missing from Tameside since July 24, 2017

Geoffrey Ralph, 75, left his home on Arbroath Street, in Droylsden, on July 24, 2017 and has not been seen since. A team of detectives, volunteers and neighbours searched the surrounding area and Geoffrey’s favourite walking spots of Hartshead Pike, Debdale Park and the canal between Clayton Vale and Daisy Nook to no avail.

Geoffrey suffers from dementia and was living with his son and daughter-in-law when he disappeared. He is white, slim, around 5ft 6ins tall with short grey hair and a white beard.

Truong Tran

Truong Tran, 14, missing from Bolton since October 11, 2018

Truong Tran, from Vietnam, was last seen in the Harper Green area of Bolton. He does not speak English and was not familiar with the area at the time.

Kadia Diane, 16, missing from Manchester since October 2, 2012

Kadia Diane
(Image: Missing Persons charity)

Kadia Diane, 16, went missing on October 2, 2012 from Manchester. She had been living in a residential unit and attending school.

On the day of her disappearance she said she was going to the cinema – but never returned.

Salim Nakhuda, 26, missing from Bolton since October 26, 2009

Salim Nakhuda

Salim Nakhuda, from Bolton, was last seen swimming in the River Ribble in Preston on October 26, 2009. Police officers standing on the embankment above were desperately trying to persuade him to climb back up to safety – but Salim ignored their pleas.

Instead, the 26-year-old swam and walked along sandbanks, in treacherous conditions. When his head finally slipped under the water, the officers called for backup.

Fearing for their own safety, they did not enter the river. Instead a professional search and rescue team arrived at the area of the river, near Avenham Park, in Preston, to look for Salim. He was never found.

Martin Joyce, 28, missing from Manchester since September 5, 1999

The disappearance of young dad Martin Joyce is being treated by police as a murder inquiry. Martin was last seen at the Bank of England pub in Ancoats in 1999.

Speaking in 2018, Det Chief Insp Stuart Wilkinson, then the lead detective in the case, said: “[Martin’s disappearance] is completely out of character, he’s literally disappeared in 1999 without any reason, which again is strange, we have had the information that he’s been in a fight, potentially that weekend, we’ve had information that he’s been in a fight and then buried in a pub.”

Adrian Eldred, 43, missing from Rochdale since May 17, 2003

Adrian Eldred

Adrian Eldred disappeared from his home in Queens Drive, Rochdale, in May 2003, six months after separating from his 41-year-old wife Tracey. His car was found abandoned in a car park in Weymouth, Dorset, a month later, prompting a search that extended to Europe, but police were unable to trace his whereabouts.

Elizabeth Ogungbayibi, five, missing from Manchester since September 26, 2006

Elizabeth Ogungbayibi

Elizabeth was just five-years-old when she disappeared in Bradford, on a visit to a relative’s home in September 2006. In the years that have since passed police have not been able to trace her and the exact circumstances of her disappearance have become clouded with time.

Jordan Ratcliffe, 16, missing from Manchester since August 31, 2008

Jordan Ratcliffe

Jordan Ratcliffe, 16, was dropped off by auntie Kimberley Pierce outside a hostel on Tib Street in the Northern Quarter on August 31, 2008. His auntie told him to call her once he was ‘settled’, though he never did.

That was the last confirmed sighting of Jordan. Enquiries took detectives to London and a seaside town 250 miles away. When the case was passed on to Greater Manchester Police ’s murder squad, officers even dredged a canal believing they would find Jordan’s body.

Christopher Chawner, 30, missing from Manchester since May 15, 2017

Christopher Chawner

Ban Nguyen, 46, missing from Didsbury since November 20, 2017

Ban Nguyen

Sang Ngoc Tran, 18, missing from Longsight since November 8, 2017

Sang Ngoc Tran

Aminate Cisse, 27, missing from Manchester since July 31, 2013

Aminate Cisse

Mudasar Iqbal, 30, missing from Manchester since November 7, 2019

Muhammad Tayyaub, 34, missing from Levenshulme since August 31, 2018

Sittie Nor, 36, missing from Greater Manchester since July 19, 2019

Hoi Nguyen, 41, missing from Didsbury since July 11, 2019

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