Grace Millane: police search for British backpacker missing in New Zealand

Grace Millane: police search for British backpacker missing in New Zealand

Grace Millane (pictured) has been missing for five days according to her brother.

The family urged anyone who had seen Millane to report her whereabouts.

"Grace has been missing for 5 days", her brother Michael Millane posted on Facebook on Tuesday.

Grace, 22, was staying at Base Backpackers in Auckland but has not contacted her family since Thursday. "They just want to know she's safe", he said.

He said: 'She hasn't been travelling before but is very independent and was [due to be] travelling on her own for about a year.

"We are unable to make further comment while police are investigating the matter". This is totally uncharacteristic of her.

He is due to arrive in New Zealand from England tomorrow to help search efforts.

Before coming to New Zealand she travelled as part of an organised group through South America for six weeks.

Grace was last seen at around 7pm on Saturday on Victoria Street in the Auckland CBD.

Ms Millane graduated from the University of Lincoln in September after studying advertising and marketing.

"She hasn't really replied to any messages between the family and it was her birthday on Sunday and she didn't respond to any messages".

Grace Millane arrived in New Zealand about two weeks ago to backpack through the country solo.

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The witness said the young woman, who she believes to have been Millane, did not have her arm out with her thumb stuck up in the air like a hitchhiker. She hadn't mentioned being in a relationship.

During that time she had been in touch with her family daily through WhatsApp.

"It would be every day that we actually had the contact, but obviously sometimes she would be doing activities and wouldn't respond for a couple of hours".

'Her disappearance was completely out of the blue'.

A New Zealand police spokesperson on Wednesday said: "Police have received a missing person's report yesterday".

CCTV and social media is being combed for clues as to her whereabouts.

A spokesman said: 'Initial inquiries are under way at this stage'.

British High Commission Wellington consular manager Tony McLeod said the commission was aware of reports of a missing British national.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: 'We are in contact with New Zealand police and providing consular support after a British woman was reported missing in Auckland'.

It is a short distance from the Hobbiton Movie Set, where much of the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit film series was filmed.

'Will keep an eye out ourselves but also show this about the sites we stay in'.

The city has the largest Polynesian population in the world and is surrounded by rainforest and dormant volcanoes.

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