NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Search to continue after kayak found in Dominic Jackson search

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Media captionKayaker Dominic Jackson search to resume at first light

The search for missing Dominic Jackson is expected to resume on Wednesday, after his kayak was recovered from the sea off the Caithness coast.

The 35-year-old was reported overdue on Sunday night after going on a weekend trip from Portsoy in Aberdeenshire.

A kayak matching the description of his vessel was found on Monday evening near Lybster, about 50 miles away.

His sister Ellie told BBC Scotland she remained hopeful he had made it ashore to cliffs and would be found.

'Strong feeling'

The search had resumed on Tuesday morning, with volunteers helping coastguards, and divers were also involved.

On Tuesday afternoon, volunteers found some kayak safety gear washed up on rocks on the Moray coast. It has not yet been confirmed it it is Mr Jackson's.

A paddle was also spotted in the water near to where the kayak was recovered off the Lybster coast.

Extensive searches are expected to continue for a third day on Wednesday.

His sister said from Australia: "I feel very strongly feel Dom is lying injured at the base of a cliff after attempting to climb out after becoming separated from his kayak and swimming to shore.

"He would be very familiar with sea cliffs like this. All his childhood holidays we climbed cliffs and rocks like this.

"I have a very strong feeling he will be found."

A Find Dom page has been set up on Facebook by friends.

Image copyright Jackson family
Image caption Dominic Jackson's kayak, pictured previously

Mr Jackson, who lives in Fettercairn in Aberdeenshire and is originally from Uckfield in East Sussex, is believed to have set off in his kayak from Portsoy harbour on Saturday morning.

The alarm was raised by his flatmate on Sunday night when he failed to return home as expected.

He is described as fit and active but relatively new to kayaking.

His father and brother joined a huge air, sea and land search on Monday involving several lifeboats, coastguard search teams and police.

A coastguard helicopter and a fixed wing aircraft have also been involved in the operation.

'Community spirit'

Insp Ewan Strachan said on Tuesday afternoon: "More than 30 volunteers have turned out to assist with coastal searches today despite the weather, and I cannot stress enough how much this has been appreciated.

"It also comes as no surprise given the community spirit in the area and the strength of feeling of wanting Dominic to be found.

"Moving forward, our search must focus at sea and immediate areas of the coastline - an operation which must be tackled by a highly specialist search team given the dangers and challenges of these terrains.

"These officers are trained in certain techniques and will be designated to specific areas as we enter our third day of this operation and continue to battle severe weather conditions.

"Our main priority is the public's safety and as such I would urge volunteers to consider other ways in which they can offer support to Dominic's family and friends at this terrible time.

"By no means does this mean we are scaling back our search - in fact our search now becomes more intensive - however we need the right people in the right places to give us the best possible chance."

Mr Jackson's green VW Transporter - which he was camping in for the weekend - was found in the Portsoy area.

Image copyright Jackson family

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