Area excavated in Philip Cairns probe

A wooded area in a golf club is being excavated in the search for a schoolboy missing for 23 years, it emerged tonight.

Gardai acting on a new lead have sealed off a patch of land in Grange Golf Club in south Dublin as part of investigations into the disappearance of 13-year-old Philip Cairns, who vanished in October 1986.

It is understood breakthroughs in new technology may have helped the missing persons probe.

“It is an excavation of the site at Grange Golf Club in Rathfarnham,” a garda spokesman said.

“An extensive investigation into the disappearance of Philip Cairns is ongoing. Recent developments have identified a small wooded area in Grange Golf Club.”

A team of geophysicists and experts from the garda technical bureau are on site and are expected to carry out excavations in the wood until Friday.

The Cairns family have been kept up to date with developments.

Schoolboy Philip went missing on his way back to Colaiste Eanna secondary school after having lunch in his home on the Ballyroan Road at 1.30pm on October 23, 1986.

One week later pupils at Colaiste Eanna returned to the school during their mid-term break to be interviewed by gardaí.

Philip’s school bag was found in a laneway off Anne Devlin Road, Ballyroan, although the lane had been searched before this. Some books were recovered while others were missing but forensic tests did not lead anywhere.

There were over 400 reported sightings and all were followed up. The Cairns family also persuaded milk companies to distribute posters of Philip during their deliveries.


Related Articles

More in this Section

Gerry Adams to step down as leader of Sinn Féin next year

Jackpot alert! Someone has won €500k in Lotto Plus 1

Our Lady’s Hospice involved in suspected property fraud probe

Thousands turn out in Dublin to call for an end to Direct Provision


Today's Stories

First licence granted to treat pain with cannabis

Barry Walsh quits Fine Gael role after ‘trial by media’

EU chiefs back Irish threat to veto Brexit trade talks

Violent teen ‘will harm girl he defiled’ if bailed

Lifestyle

A towering achievement: Exploring Irish castles and beautiful buildings

Books that belong on the gardener's bookshelf

The domestic flash of Francis Brennan

John Wilson touring with music made with Rory Gallagher in Taste

More From The Irish Examiner