Winchelsea aircraft crash: Family issue photo of missing pilot

Simon Wells went missing when the light aircraft he was piloting ditched into the sea off Winchelsea Beach.
Simon Wells went missing when the light aircraft he was piloting ditched into the sea off Winchelsea Beach.
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A photograph has been issued of the missing pilot whose light aircraft ditched into the sea off the coast of Winchelsea Beach yesterday afternoon (Saturday, August 6).

He has been named as Simon Wells, 44, from Greatstone in Kent, pictured here with a Lightning aircraft at an air display.

Mr Wells was flying a Cherokee aircraft when it ditched into the sea shortly after 5pm.

Coastguard helicopters and RNLI boats searched the area, but nobody was found and the search was called off at 10pm.

Some wreckage believed to be from the aircraft was found by the Coastguard on Winchelsea Beach yesterday and has been removed to a secure location for examination by the Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB).

Meanwhile officers from Sussex Police have been on the scene today (Sunday August 7) using a drone to try and locate anything which may have come from the plane.

Anyone who saw what happened, or who sees anything washed ashore over the coming days which may come from the aircraft, is asked to contact Sussex Police on 101@sussex.pnn.police.uk or call 101 quoting Operation Ascot.

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