Detectives renew appeal to find murdered clubber Melanie Hall's killer

Detectives renew appeal to find murdered clubber Melanie Hall’s killer as they reissue e-fit of man seen with a woman inside Bath nightclub on day she went missing in June 1996

  • Melanie Hall, 25, was last seen alive at busy nightclub in Bath city centre in 1996
  • Her remains were found years later near the M5 in Gloucestershire by workmen
  • Police have now re-issued e-fit of man they believe may have been with Melanie 
  • Melanie’s parents have since reinstated the £50,000 reward for any information provided to police which leads to the arrest and conviction of those responsible 

Police have renewed their investigation into the murder of Melanie Hall – 24 years after she first went missing. 

Avon and Somerset Police have released details about a possible sighting of 25-year-old Melanie arguing with a man outside a nightclub in Bath where she was last seen alive in June, 1996.

The force is urging members of the public to think back to that night in the hope potential witnesses may come forward.

Police have also re-issued an E-fit to identify a man who two witnesses said they saw with a woman, matching Melanie’s description, inside Cadillacs nightclub. 

Eleven years have passed since the discovery of Melanie Hall’s remains by the side of the M5 in South Gloucestershire.

Melanie, who was a clerical worker at the Royal United Hospital in Bath, was last seen on Sunday 9 June, 1996, at Cadillacs nightclub in Bath city centre at about 1.45am. 

Melanie Hall, 25, a clerical worker at the Royal United Hospital in Bath, was killed more than 24 years ago and police are renewing their appeal for information and witnesses to find her killer

The e-fit which has been re-issued by police as they continue to hunt the killer of Melanie Hall

The building formerly known as Cadillacs in Bath, the last place where Melanie was seen alive

Her remains were not found until October 5, 2009, when a workman discovered her body next to the northbound slip road of junction 14 on M5.

There have been 11 arrests during the investigation into Miss Hall’s murder but no one has ever been charged. 

Almost exactly 11 years after the remains were found Avon and Somerset Police have a renewed focus to their investigation.

The police have asked members of the public to think back to the day Melanie went missing on June 9, 1996.

There was an unconfirmed sighting of a woman arguing with a man between 1.45am and 2am on Old Orchard around the corner from the nightclub’s entrance.

Police have ‘not ruled out’ that this is Melanie and have asked anyone who may remember this incident to get in touch.

June 1996 – Melanie is on a night out with friends and is last seen alive at Cadillacs nightclub in Bath.

October 2009 – A workman discovers Melanie’s remains by the side of the M5 on a slip road.

March 2014 – Police appeal for information about a white Golf GTi which had links to Cardiff which was described as ‘a significant line of enquiry’ 

June 2016 – Officers discover DNA evidence near the site where Melanie was found and renew their appeal

October 2019 – Police reveal they are focusing on samples of DNA found on a length of blue polypropylene rope wrapped around thin black bin liners which contained the body

October 2020 – Detectives renew appeal with e-fit and details on possible sightings of Melanie on the night she went missing 

What’s more, police have re-issued the E-fit and a description of a man they believe may have been with Melanie in the nightclub.

He’s described as being white, 27 years old, 5ft 10ins, of medium build with dark brown hair, dark brown eyes, bushy eyebrows and clean shaven.

He was wearing black trousers, black shoes and a brown silk shirt. It’s possible he had a gold hooped earring in his right ear and wore a flashy gold watch.

The senior investigating officer, Detective Superintendent James Riccio said how a small or seemingly insignificant piece of information could be ‘the key to solving this case’. 

He said: ‘We remain as determined as ever to find out who killed her and why.

‘We have a number of active lines of enquiry we’re pursuing, including reviewing a vast amount of material gathered during what’s been one of the biggest investigations ever carried out by Avon and Somerset Police.’ 

Det Supt Riccio stressed: ‘A small or seemingly insignificant piece of information could still be the key to solving this case.

‘We’d ask the public to please consider the appeal points above, as well as the key dates and locations which feature in this case, and call our investigation team if you can help.

‘You may feel able to speak to us now when you couldn’t before.’

Melanie’s father Steve Hall has previously released a powerful and moving statement detailing the impact the murder has had on their lives. 

Steve and Pat Hall the parents of murdered Melanie Hall say they continue to hope for answers

He said last year: ‘It is now over 23 years since our youngest daughter, Melanie, was murdered, probably on the streets of Bath.

‘Since that time the Avon and Somerset Police have poured endless resources in their attempt to find her killer.

‘Sadly, as yet, this objective remains unfulfilled, although I and my family remain eternally optimistic that, eventually they will be successful.’

Officers have received at least 1,700 calls from the public about the case and completed more than 5,700 tasks or investigative actions.

At least 1,600 statements have been taken, and while there have been 11 arrests, no-one has ever been charged.

Mr Hall added: ‘In our family we will forever grieve for, and miss our lovely daughter. 

‘She will never fulfil her life’s ambitions, never marry, never have children and my wife and I will never have another grandchild.

‘Her mother’s lasting memory of her youngest daughter is the day she viewed a battered skull and a few broken bones in the coroner’s office at Portishead.  

‘We are sure that, after all these years [those responsible for Melanie’s murder] will happily take their awful secret to the grave as we will do the same with our grief.’ 

As well as the e-fit and possible sighting, detectives are urging anyone who may have been involved in the aftermath of the crime to come forward as well as anyone who may have witnessed suspicious activity on the M5 that day.

A photo of missing clothes, handbag and shoes similar to the ones belonging to Melanie Hall

A spokesman added: ‘Maybe you assisted with the deposition of Melanie’s body but were not involved in the murder. We want to hear from you now.

‘Or did you see any suspicious activity or a vehicle parked on the northbound J14 slip road of the M5 at Thornbury in the early hours of Sunday 9 June 1996 or the days immediately afterwards?’  

The spokesman added: ‘Do you have information on where Melanie’s clothing or belongings may be? They’ve never been found.

‘They include a pale blue silk dress with a round neck, black suede mule shoes with straps across the front and an open toe, size 5 or 6, a cream single-breasted, long-sleeved jacket and a black satchel-type handbag.’ 

You can contact police with information via 101. 

Melanie’s parents have reinstated a £50,000 reward for information provided to the police which leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or people responsible for Melanie’s murder.

The independent charity Crimestoppers is also offering a reward of up to £10,000.

You will only qualify for this reward if the information is passed to Crimestoppers directly on 0800 555 111.

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