Marina search by divers draws a blank

A diver prepares to enter Hartlepool Marina. Pictured below, Josh Willingale
A diver prepares to enter Hartlepool Marina. Pictured below, Josh Willingale

THE search for a missing town man will continue after police divers spent a day scouring the depths of Hartlepool Marina.

Cleveland Police drafted in diving experts from Northumbria Police Force to help in their search for Joshua Willingale who was last seen 12 days ago.

Underwater searches throughout yesterday proved fruitless but officers have stressed that is just one line of inquiry they are currently pursuing.

Joshua’s family are said to be devastated and are desperate to know of his whereabouts.

Officers feared he may have been in the water because the 24-year-old was captured on CCTV at 1.42am on Saturday, September 15, in the area of the Premier inn, at Jackson’s Dock.

Police were focusing their inquiries around there because that is the last known confirmed sighting.

Divers were again in the water throughout yesterday morning and early afternoon.

A spokeswoman for Cleveland Police said: “Diving experts from Northumbria Police Force are due to continue their searches tomorrow.

“We are obviously increasingly concerned about Joshua’s whereabouts with the passing of time.

“His family are distraught and we would urge anyone with any information to contact Hartlepool Police.”

Police chiefs say it is standard practice to call on underwater search teams in relation to missing people who were last seen near to an area of water.

Joshua went missing after a night out with friends on the same day that saw him go to the Royal pub, in the town’s Church Street.

He did not return home.

He is described as white, 6ft 2in-tall, of slim build, with short, brown, wavy hair.

He has a chip to his top front tooth.

At the time of his disappearance he was wearing a black Adidas zip-up top with red stripes on the sleeves, a white T-shirt with a large blue Adidas emblem on the front, blue jogging bottoms and white Lacoste trainers.

Anyone with any information can contact Hartlepool Police on the non-emergency 101 number.