x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Royal appeal from family of missing British seaman

The family of missing Timmy MacColl appeal to Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid for help.

DUBAI // The family of missing British seaman Timmy MacColl has appealed to Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid for help in the search for him.

Mr MacColl disappeared in Dubai on May 27 while on shore leave after his ship, HMS Westminster, docked at Port Rashid.

Neil Cunningham, the uncle of Mr MacColl's pregnant wife Rachael, today/yesterday confirmed that the family had written to Sheikh Mohammed, the Ruler of Dubai and Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE.

It is understood that Mrs MacColl's grandfather sent the letter. He made Sheikh Mohammed aware of the situation and asked if he could help with the investigation.

Mr MacColl, a 27-year-old father-of-two from Gosport in Hampshire, was last seen entering a taxi outside the Rock Bottom Cafe at the Regent Palace Hotel in Bur Dubai at around 2am. Friends paid the fare and asked the driver to take him back to his ship, but he never arrived.

No trace of him has been found in the more than two months that have since passed. Divers from Britain's Royal Navy assisted Dubai Police by searching the waters in and around Port Rashid.

Mrs MacColl, 25, is expecting the couple's third child in October. His shipmates are heading home without him as the Westminster has completed its tour of duty in the Gulf. It is due to return to its home base, Portsmouth, on August 13.

csimpson@thenational.ae