Leyton News Walthamstow

Who was Brian Wallace? Investigators hope to crack eight-year mystery

Brian worked and lived locally but, eight years after his death, very little is known about him
By Victoria Munro

The man known as
The man known as “Brian Wallace” (courtesy of Locate International)

Volunteer investigators are trying to solve the almost eight-year-old mystery of a man’s death in Walthamstow.

On 22nd January 2015, at about 10.20pm, a man was struck and killed by a driver on the corner of Forest Road and Hoe Street, near The Bell.

The driver was later given a suspended sentence for their part in the crash but, despite working and living locally, the victim “Brian Wallace” has never been identified. 

Six months ago, charity Locate International began investigating, uncovering new details about Brian’s life, and hopes to finally find his family and inform them of his tragic death.

Brian Wallace (courtesy of Locate International)

In a message to residents, Local International founder Dave Grimstead said: “We appreciate that this incident took place nearly eight years ago now and that the man was known to live a private and quiet life. 

“[But] our teams work on long-term missing and unidentified person cases and regularly deal with cases that have remained unsolved for decades. 

“Sometimes details that seem insignificant to the public match up with other information we’ve already received. We’ve managed to resolve cases much older than this one using seemingly minor pieces of information and hope to do the same for this man.”

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Brian had no ID on his person when he died and the only numbers in his phone were related to his work as a builder, which he had done locally for many years.

Police believe he was living near the scene of the crash under the name “Brian Wallace”. He was a white man aged between 50 and 70, with grey hair and a moustache, and around 5’7” tall. 

Since they began investigating, the Locate International team have learned he frequented the William The Fourth pub in High Road, Leyton, had a Northern accent and told locals he had family in the Sheffield area. He may also have mentioned estranged children.  

Volunteers putting up flyers in the borough (credit: Locate International)

This week, volunteers from Locate have started distributing letters and posters in the Walthamstow and Leyton areas, calling for anyone who knew Brian to come forward. 

Dave added: “We recognise that the festive season can be a challenging time for families and this case is an all-too-common reminder that people can become estranged and alienated from their loved ones, for myriad reasons.

“We understand the sensitivity that an incident like this is surrounded with and are committed to handling all information in a confidential and respectful manner.”

If you think you ever met Brian, please contact Locate confidentially by emailing [email protected], calling 0300 102 1011 or visiting their website.

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