Wark Forest Man
Found On: 2nd February 1990
On 02 February 1990, the body of a 20–40-year-old man was discovered in Wark Forest. He is described as being 5’6″-5’8″, of medium build, “dark European ethnicity” and is believed to have been deceased for between 4 to 12 months.
About this case
His clothing included: a green ‘Vander’ anorak, a denim ‘Lee’ jacket, and brown “Hi Tec” Walking shoes of different sizes (left Size 8, right Size 8.5). The following possessions were found inside a blue backpack near to his body: 2 blue nylon ropes, 2 finger badges/Elastoplast, grey 2 cell torch, 2 1/2 litre plastic bottles 1 with water 1 with Whisky, the book “History of London” by Robert Gray and a “Camping” Swiss Army Knife. A blue/black holdall was also found. This contained: blue jeans, black running shorts, white Y fronts, vicks sinex spray, and a Culmaster bush hat. The unidentified man is believed to be American and has a potential name of Christopher Oliver.
These details emerged in 1990, when a facial reconstruction of the unidentified man was circulated in local newspapers. An employee from the local Bowes Hotel, Aileen Mckay stated that the image strongly resembled a former guest who had checked in for one night as Christopher Oliver on 14.10.1989. She reported that Christopher Oliver appeared to be in his late 30’s and had an American accent. The book found near the body was identified as similar to a book missing from the Bowes hotel (Newcastle Journal, 2 May 1991). Little is known of the man’s movements after he left the Bowes hotel. The 09.02.1990 release of the Aberdeen Press and Journal & Aberdeen Evening Express stated that the unidentified body was thought to be that of Christoper Oliver, last seen in a Haltwhistle hotel on 18.10.1989. Newspaper articles about the case also specify that a booking in the same name was also made at Hexham Tourist Information Centre, but the date of this booking is not provided.