New programme highlights Luke search

A NEW BBC television series following those looking for missing people is to feature the family and friends of 19-year-old Luke Durbin.The programme, which will be aired on digital channel BBC Three from Thursday, aims to highlight the work of the National Missing Persons Helpline.

A NEW BBC television series following those looking for missing people is to feature the family and friends of 19-year-old Luke Durbin.

The programme, which will be aired on digital channel BBC Three from Thursday, aims to highlight the work of the National Missing Persons Helpline.

Luke's mother, Nicki, was approached by the series' producers earlier this year and a film crew has followed her tireless efforts to find her son since August.

He was last seen in Ipswich on May 12 and since then Nicki, with the help of her family and friends, has come up with a stream of ideas to keep Luke, from Hollesley, in the media spotlight and in people's minds.

Although she has yet to see the programme, last night she said it had been difficult to let camera crews into her life during such a difficult time.

But she is hoping the national coverage of Luke's disappearance will mean more people across the country will see his picture and lead to information on his whereabouts.

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She said: “It was a huge thing to do at such a traumatic time of your life but both the women who filmed us were most compassionate and lovely.

“The great thing for me is that through the programme I have been in touch with other families who have missing children. It has been incredibly emotional talking to these mums.”

Nicki was initially reluctant to do the programme, thinking that Luke might have been found by the time it went out.

She said: “It was a huge thing at the beginning to agree to do it. All along I thought Luke would be well and at home. I said 'what if Luke is home?' and they said then it would be a family reunited story. Sadly Luke is not home.”

The eight-part series Runaways? - a title which Nicki feels does not reflect Luke's situation - will be screened on Thursdays at 7.30pm.

n Luke went missing on May 12 after a night out at the Zest nightclub in Ipswich.

n The last positive sighting of him was at the Old Cattle Market zebra crossing in Dog's Head Street at 4am.

n He is described as white, 5ft 10ins, slim, with short brown wavy hair.

n At the time of his disappearance he was wearing a black or grey long-sleeved collared shirt, a blue/grey sweatshirt, blue jeans and brown suede shoes.

n Anyone with any information should call Suffolk police on 01473 613500 or the National Missing Persons Helpline on 0500 700700.

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