20 years on: Sister tells of pain over Richey Edwards' disappearance

Richey Edwards disappeared on February 1st 1995. Credit: Nick Tansley/EMPICS Entertainment

The sister of missing Manic Street Preachers lyricist Richey Edwards has spoken of how difficult it is not knowing what happened to him nearly 20 years after he disappeared.

This Sunday marks 20 years since the guitarist checked out of a London hotel never to be seen again.

Ms Elias said coming to terms with the events of February 1st 1995 is still a long way off for her family - especially in light of the death of her father Graham two years ago.

She said: "It was difficult losing dad....he had terminal cancer. It was difficult because he had to face up to that realisation - that we all may have to - we may not find out what happened to Richard.

"Going through his bereavement, I recognised the difference between that and someone who is missing...when someone goes missing you are left with this ongoing uncertainty.

"Not knowing makes it worse."

Richey Edwards went missing after checking into a hotel on February 1st 1995. Credit: Nick Tansley/EMPICS Entertainment

Edwards, who was admitted to Whitchurch Psychiatric Hospital in Cardiff before being checked into the Priory Clinic, went missing after checking into London's Embassy Hotel.

Two weeks later his car, which appeared to have been lived in, was found abandoned with a flat battery at a motorway service station.

Despite numerous high-profile appeals in the media, no trace of Edwards has been found - either dead or alive.

Ms Elias said: "Even though we had Richard declared legally dead (in 2008) that hasn't assisted us in anyway dealing with the loss of him. That process was just a financial matter.

"I think unless somebody returned or you recover their body or you at least know where they are - even if they don't want to return - that would resolve the matter."

In 2014 Manic Street Preachers re-released their third album 'The Holy Bible'. Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire/PA

In the meantime, she wants people to remember him as a brilliant writer rather than a mere tragic figure or "cult of Richey" caricature.

She said: "The fact that he was really intelligent and sensitive and that he was the force behind the band, their lyrics, just seems to get forgotten.

"We've always been tremendously proud of Richard."