Body identified as missing journalist

POLICE yesterday confirmed that the body of a man discovered near Britain's highest mountain has been identified as that of missing Essex journalist Gavin Nightingale.

By Roddy Ashworth

POLICE yesterday confirmed that the body of a man discovered near Britain's highest mountain has been identified as that of missing Essex journalist Gavin Nightingale.

Mr Nightingale, 39, was last seen on February 11 leaving the Glen Nevis youth hostel, near Ben Nevis, with the intention of climbing the mountain's north face.

But the experienced walker did not return and the day after he was reported missing.


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Members of the Lochaber mountain rescue team mounted a series of attempts to locate Mr Nightingale but were unsure of which route he had intended to take.

Bad weather hampered their rescue efforts, with poor visibility, 15 to 20-foot snowdrifts and the constant threat of avalanches.

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However, 10 days ago a young couple out walking came across a body after snow cover in the area had started to thaw.

Mr Nightingale was the only walker to have gone missing in the previous two months who remained unaccounted for.

Yesterday a spokesman for the Northern Constabulary said that a formal identification had taken place and confirmed the remains were those of Mr Nightingale, a senior sub-editor for Essex County Newspapers.

Yesterday Irene Kettle, group editor of ECN - which publishes, among other titles, the Evening Gazette, the Essex County Standard, the Harwich and Manningtree Standard and the Clacton Gazette - paid tribute to Mr Nightingale.

“I have spoken with Gavin's family this afternoon,” she said.

“This will at least allow them to move on to the next stage of the grieving process.

“From our point of view, we have all lost a valued friend and colleague who we will never forget.”

Mr Nightingale's family, who live in Colchester, declined to comment.

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