Police Divers Search For Missing Camper

Police divers are helping in the search for a missing camper thought to have been caught up in the floods that swept Aberdeenshire.

Personal items belonging to Terence Kilbride were found in the Bridge of Dee area of Aberdeen at the weekend.

The 48-year-old, who is originally from Warrington, Cheshire, is known to go camping and spend time outdoors in Aberdeenshire and was reported missing on Monday.

The region has experienced bad weather and serious flooding since last week and police said they are concerned for his welfare.

Mr Kilbride is around 6ft with short, dark, greying hair and blue eyes.

Inspector David Paterson said: "Given the recent inclement weather we are extremely concerned to trace Mr Kilbride and confirm he is safe and well and we are treating this as a missing person inquiry.

"A photograph, which is a few years old, of Mr Kilbride has been provided and we are asking people to see if they recognise him.

"Mr Kilbride is known to go camping and spend time outdoors and it is thought he may have been camping in the Aberdeen or Aberdeenshire areas. It is also thought that he may have a bicycle with him.

"If you have any information which may help us trace Mr Kilbride please contact us on 101.''

A Met Office warning remains in place for Aberdeenshire, which has seen some of the worst damage caused by extreme water levels.

The local council said river levels have peaked and are slowly falling but many residents in Ballater and Aboyne remain in alternative accommodation and much work has to be done to repair travel routes in the area.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney has announced that more funding will be made available to help the hardest-hit communities get back on their feet.

Aberdeenshire Council chief executive Jim Savege said plans were in place for the repair of roads and structures as the north east begins its recovery.

He said: "We've had positive discussions with the Scottish Government over access to funding to help us progress repairs, and we will be having ongoing conversations about how we can help minimise flood risk in a number of communities in the future.''

Work is continuing to save the 16th century Abergeldie Castle on the banks of the Dee that threatened to topple into the swollen river.

It was left perilously close to the water after severe weather saw land bordering the property swept away.

Stones have been added to the river to divert fast waters away from the land around the A-listed castle which is located by Crathie, which neighbours the Queen's Balmoral residence.

Engineers have also started to fix the Invercauld Bridge on the A93 at Braemar which is expected to reopen in a fortnight.

The A93 at Micras remains impassable following the collapse of a large section of the road and there are plans to have a temporary diversion in place within the next 10 days, the council said.

In Argyll and Bute, efforts are continuing to make the A83 at the Rest and Be Thankful safe for travel, with specialist teams set to blast a 150-tonne boulder sitting around 175m above the carriageway.

A yellow weather warning remains in place in Tayside, Fife, the Lothians and Dumfries and Galloway throughout today and the Scottish Environment Agency said more than 20 areas are still at risk of flooding.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said it received 350 flooding-related calls from December 30 to January 5.

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