Search for city adventurer has been called off

Matt on the beach in New Zealand
Matt on the beach in New Zealand
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A search for a missing schooner with a Lancaster man on board will not be resumed unless new information comes to light, authorities have said.

The Nina was hit by a storm on June 4 on its final leg of a round the world trip and has not been seen since.

Matt Wootton, an environmentalist who lived in Lancaster for 10 years, was one of seven people on board.

The 70ft wooden ship last made contact on June 4, when an undelivered text message warned the boat’s sails had been shredded by the storm.

The Rescue Co-ordination Centre in New Zealand spent 11 days searching for the ship and survivors. However, the authorities confirmed over the weekend that the search had been called off.

A spokesman said radio broadcasts would continue to be made, appealing for information, but the search would not be resumed unless new details came to light.

The Guardian revealed last week that Matt, 35, voiced his worst nightmares in an emotional online blog before leaving on his big adventure.

He expressed his fear of water and said: “Die in the ocean and they’ll probably never find your body.”