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Derek Brann's murder in Folkestone 29 years ago is reviewed by Kent Police

By Matt Leclere

The unsolved brutal murder of a taxi driver exactly 29 years ago is being reviewed by cold case detectives as his sons renew a public appeal to catch their father's killer.

Police are investigating the death of Derek Brann again as his two sons launched an appeal and put up a reward for information today.

Mr Brann, who was 48 years old, was stabbed several times and his blood-soaked taxi found in Seabrook, near Hythe, on November 6, 1988.

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Taxi driver Derek Brann was murdered in 1988 - his body was found on the M20. Picture Kent Police

Taxi driver Derek Brann was murdered in 1988 - his body was found on the M20. Picture: Kent Police

Aaron and Adrian Brann were just teenagers when their dad's car was founded abandoned in a laybay the morning after Bonfire Night.

Two weeks later Mr Brann's body was found buried and hidden under a crash barrier on the M20 with multiple stab wounds.

The brothers' fond memories of their father during their years growing up in Folkestone together will be forever tainted by the death of their father.

Together they used to sing in the church choir and family memories are still tarnished by the fact their dad's killer is still on the loose.

Their mother died last January prompting them to reignite their bid to find the murderer.

They have now issued an appeal and offered a "substantial" financial award for anyone to come forward with information that leads to the conviction of their father's murderer.

Officers are  relaunching their investigation and are hoping to use improved DNA technology to track down and bring Mr Brann's killer to justice.

Aaron, now 44, was 15 when his father was killed. He said: "Dad was a very firm man, ex-military, but he was a very loving father as well.

Mr Brann's sons Adrian and Aaron have issued an appeal on the anniversary of their father's murder. Picture Kent Police

Mr Brann's sons Adrian and Aaron have issued an appeal on the anniversary of their father's murder. Picture: Kent Police

"Still to this day I cannot understand why anybody would have done what they did to dad. It’s incomprehensible.

"It’s difficult to live with but you just get on with your life. Since our mum died last January it has brought up all sorts of memories again, and reminded me of the desire we all have to get a positive conclusion to it all."

Mr Brann was a prominent member of the Lions Club in Folkestone and devoted much of his time over several years to raise money for local causes.

He and his sons were all members of the church choir, singing at several big venues including the Royal Albert Hall and Westminster Cathedral. 

The last contact Mr Brann had with anyone was to his employer at around 2.30am. He was due home in the early hours but never came home.

His body was found by a motorist whose car had broken down on the London-bound carriageway close to the Channel Tunnel.

He was initially reported missing by his wife, Audrey, when her husband had not come home.

The taxi, a Nissan Bluebird, was found by a member of the public at around 11.45am in the laybay on Horn Street by the junction with Seabrook Court.

Mr Brann's taxi was found abandoned in Sandgate on November 6, 1988. Picture Kent Police

Mr Brann's taxi was found abandoned in Sandgate on November 6, 1988. Picture: Kent Police

The scene where Mr Brann's taxi was found in the layby exactly 29 years ago. Picture Google

The scene where Mr Brann's taxi was found in the layby exactly 29 years ago. Picture: Google

Adrian Brann, a 13-year-old schoolboy when his father died, spoke about the nightmares he experienced since the murder.

He said: "My memories of that time are very hazy and I only really remember snippets, but they are always the worst snippets – the discovery of his body, the amount of times he had been stabbed and the amount of blood.

"I remember having nightmares on a regular basis, and can remember the door handle in my dream being a knife.

"I would wake up shouting until my mum came in. My father and I were very close and it has been hard for me personally. My life has not been straightforward since."

Derek Brann was a member of the Folkestone Lions Club. Picture Kent Police

Derek Brann was a member of the Folkestone Lions Club. Picture: Kent Police

They are now hoping for anyone with information to come forward.

Adrian added: "Somebody must know who did this and they possibly still live in the area.

"Nothing is going to bring Dad back but Mum has passed away not knowing who did it and as a family we just want a conclusion."

Anyone who wishes to contact the family directly for the appeal or the reward can write to derekbrannappeal@gmail.com

Anyone with information about Mr Brann’s death is urged to call 01634 884010 and leave a message for the cold case investigation team. Alternatively call Kent Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

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