UK: Coastguard Appeals for Information on Missing Swimmer

Portland Coastguard appealed for information from the public regarding a woman who went missing in the water near Undercliff Drive, Bournemouth, UK, on the morning of May 15th. Portland Coastguard Duty Watch Manager Ros Evans said:

“The weather is very fair today with a calm sea, light airs and a very good visibility of 8 nautical miles. Searches have been undertaken along the shore, out to sea and from the air from Shore Road to Boscombe with nothing found.

We are now appealing to the public to come forward if they have any further information about the missing woman. She is described as having been on the beach at around 5.00 am this morning which is unusual for this time of year. She is her mid 50s, with black hair. If anyone has seen anything unusual then could they please call the Coastguard at Portland on 01305 760439.”

A member of the public found some clothes, a bus pass and a hotel key near a groyne at Bournemouth’s Undercliff Drive to the left of the Pier and immediately notified police.

The Poole and Southbourne Coastguard Rescue Teams were immediately turned out whilst the Police conducted their inland investigations. The Poole and Mudeford RNLI inshore lifeboats and Poole all weather were also asked to launch and the Portland Coastguard rescue helicopter began an air search. RNLI beach lifeguards have also been scouring the area.

The Coastguard Team identified footprints going into the water, yet none coming out, and the Coastguard began broadcasting a pan pan signal alerting craft in the area to the situation and to keep a watch out.

By just after 9.00 on May 15th a great number of Thundercats and their drivers who were due to take part in races off the beach also joined the hunt and were co-ordinated by the Coastguard in a line abreast across the whole length of the seashore.

If you have any information please call Portland Coastguard on 01305 760439.

Boats and Vessels in the Area

Portland Coastguard transmit their M.S.I. Broadcast at 7.30 then every 3hours UTC

On the following Channels:

  • CH 84 from the transmitter at Grove on Portland Bill.
  • CH 23 from the transmitter at Bincleaves, Weymouth.
  • Channel 86 from the transmitter at Beer Head, Lyme Bay.
  • Channel 23 from the transmitter at Hengistbury Head, Christchurch.

Listen for the announcement on VHF Ch 16, which will direct you to the appropriate (clearest) VHF Channel.


At approximately 12.07pm on 15 May 2010, the body of a woman was found floating in the water approximately one mile south east of Hengitsbury Head.

The body was recovered by a lifeboat. Dorset Police reported no suspicious circumstances. The Coroner’s Office has been informed. It is not yet confirmed whether the body is that of the missing woman.

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