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Police, WightSAR and the National Police Air Service helicopter are all involved in the search for a missing elderly gentleman in the West Wight this evening (Tuesday).

The man, who suffers from advanced vascular dementia, went missing from the Freshwater area at around 18:00 and hasn’t been seen since.

A large scale search was launched at around 19:10, with volunteers from Isle of Wight Search and Rescue called in at 19:35.

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The Police helicopter from Bournemouth is currently circling the area in the hope of locating the unnamed male, who is thought to be in his 70s.

There are conflicting reports on what the missing man is wearing as there is no official appeal from Police as of yet. The man’s son says he is wearing a T-Shirt and flip flops.

Concerns are growing for the individual as he also suffers from diabetes and has not taken his medication this evening.

UPDATE @ 21:06 – Police have confirmed they are looking for 79-year-old Dennis Steel, who has gone missing from Brambles Chine.

He is described as white, 5ft 10ins tall and of skinny build. He is bald with grey hair on the sides. He was last seen wearing a pink polo shirt.

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If you see him, or think you may have seen him since 18:00 this evening, call Police on 101 with the reference 44200250227.

UPDATE @ 21:34 – It has been confirmed by the family of Dennis Steel that he has been found safe and well and is currently at St Mary’s Hospital.

Island Echo understands he walked up Monks Lane before catching a bus to Newport. He was seen walking up Hunnyhill in Newport at around 20:15.

UPDATE @ 23:00 – The family have thanked everyone who was involved in the search for Dennis. Taking to social media, Dennis’ son Alistar has said:

“I can’t start to thank everybody that helped tonight, dad is very confused and somehow managed to get a bus with no mask or any money and someone that recognised him from the Facebook post got him to the hospital.

”Once again thank you everyone x“

Dennis enjoying a hot drink and a snack at St Mary’s Hospital tonight. Photo: Alistair Steel (Son) / Facebook

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This is so sad. Please everyone in the West Wight go & look up & down your road/street, check any alley way or open space. Just think if it was your relative. Hope he is found safe & well. Xxxx


There’s no one pictured, where’s the picture of the person missing ?


Fingers crossed for his safe and prompt return.

Perry Hill

So worrying for the family, lets hope he is found soon, frightening in the dark for someone suffering from this vile ailment.
Could the police not use sniffer dogs?


My husband Simon found him in hunnyhill. He approached him as he look lost and shivering. He asked him what he’s doing there? He said he went to visit his brother but forgot which house number, so he knocked on every door and he is from Freshwater. He wanted to borrow 50 pence, but he forgot his phone number. Simon just let him borrow his jacket as he is cold. He managed to convince him to be accompanied to St.Marys hospital. He mentioned that his son is a policeman. He was handed over to the A & E department. He… Read more »

Linda Belcher

Well done to your husband for caring enough to make sure this vulnerable man received help lucky he was walking to work


Free tea and biscuit . Well done dotto Den
He was well known around Shanklin driving the Dotto Train

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