Cumbria

Missing angler sparks River Eden search

Robert Heaton
Image caption Mr Heaton has tattoos on the inside of both arms

A major search is continuing in Cumbria after an angler was reported missing.

Robert Heaton, 41, was last seen leaving his home on Belah Road, Carlisle, on Thursday to go fishing.

On Saturday a member of the public found a fishing rod and other items opposite the junction of Eden Street on Etterby Scaur, close to the River Eden.

Underwater search teams joined the effort on Monday but police said it was still possible that Mr Heaton left the area on foot.

Insp Andy Hanson said: "We are appealing to anyone who has any information about his whereabouts to contact us and let us know if he is safe and well.

"This is a distressing time for his family and we are offering support."

RAF helicopter

Mr Heaton's family have confirmed that a baseball cap found along with the fishing rod on Saturday was his.

An RAF Kinloss helicopter searched the area from Eden Bridge to Solway Estuary on Sunday and coastguard teams searched both sides of the river from the Eden Bridges to Grinsdale.

RNLI volunteers were also involved in the operation.

Mr Heaton is described as white, of stocky build, 5ft 9in tall, with short, dark-brown hair.

He was last seen wearing a grey hooded top, black or navy tracksuit bottoms with stripes and brown boots.

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