The family of a man who went missing in North Belfast on New Year’s Day nine years ago have issued a fresh appeal for information on the eve of his anniversary.

Martin Kelly, who was 21 at the time, was last seen leaving a bar in the Docks area at around 7.10pm and has never been seen since.

His family maintain the hope that vital information about his possible whereabouts may still be brought to police.

Mr Kelly, from Kinnegar Drive and a barman in Holywood, was with friends watching a football match on TV in Pat’s Bar in Garmoyle Street in 2006.

Martin, who’s about 6ft 1in tall, of slim build with short dark hair and was wearing a black Guinness T-shirt and blue jeans, remained in the bar talking to other customers after his friends had left.

His father Raymond has repeatedly pleaded for two young girls overheard praying for his son at a Holywood church on the night he went missing to come forward with whatever information they may have.

Speaking prior to the ninth anniversary of Martin’s disappearence, Detective Chief Inspector Colin Gillis said: “Police remain committed and determined to discovering what happened to Martin and to bringing closure to his family. Detectives will continue to follow up all new lines of enquiry and any new information. Police invest-igating Martin’s disappearance carried out searches on land and on the water and deployed the diving team and air support team in these searches. We have also undertaken extensive enquiries but despite conducting a wide range of interviews and reviewing all available CCTV relating to the incident, Martin has not been located.

“We would reiterate our appeal for anyone that may have information in relation to Martin Kelly to contact detectives at Musgrave police station on 101 or ring the independent charity Crime-stoppers which is on 0800 555 111 or Missing People on 116 000.”