POLICE in London are searching for an Irish 18-year-old who went missing while on a society trip with Dublin City University.
Patrick Halpin was last seen leaving Zoo nightclub on Bear Street off Leicester Square in the early hours of Wednesday morning.
The first year actuary student, who turned 18 just last week, left the nightclub to go to a nearby Burger King and hasn’t been seen since, his sister Regina told The Irish Post.
“Patrick is part of the drama society and went to London on Tuesday morning for its annual theatre trip to the West End,” she explained.
“Then on the Tuesday night they went out to the Zoo nightclub and he left them on his own just after 12.”
Miss Halpin, 22, said the drama society met up at the nightclub with around 100 DCU students from other university societies in London this week, creating a situation where it was “very hard to keep track of everyone”.
Friends initially thought Mr Halpin, from Loughrea in Galway, was out buying food when he could not be found yesterday morning at the Astor Museum Hotel, where the drama society was staying.
But their fears grew when his phone continued to ring out and he did not collect his theatre tickets.
“Patrick had bought tickets to see the matinee performance of The Book of Mormon yesterday,” his sister said.
“He was particularly excited about that and had been looking forward to it for ages. So when he did not come back to collect his tickets people realised something was wrong.
“That was when alarm bells went off and when they started to go and look in hospitals for him and contact the police.”
Miss Halpin, who is also a student at DCU, will travel to London later today with her father to assist with efforts to track down the young man.
“This is very distressing for our parents,” Miss Halpin said.
“It would be completely out of character for Patrick to go off galavanting or to go missing without at least letting someone know where he was going.
“He would have sent a text to somebody or somebody would have known where he was going whenever he went out and would go back to a friend’s house.
“This was definitely different. He was in a different city and has just turned 18, so he would have been quite excited at it all and that might have been a factor.”
She added: “I suppose he might have forgotten that he was not in Dublin, which is very different to London.”
Patrick, who plays hurling with local club Kilnadeema/Leitrim and was a part of Ireland’s under-18 volleyball team, had not visited London since his childhood.
He is described as about 5′ 5″, with sandy brown hair and blue eyes.
The Metropolitan Police are advising that anyone in the United Kingdom with information can contact them on 101, or in Ireland can contact Gardaí.
They are now trawling through CCTV footage and have placed a tracker on Patrick’s phone.