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‘RIP big fella – tributes paid to ‘fishing fanatic’ from Sheffield who died in cliff fall

Colin Middleton died after falling from a cliff in the Orkney Islands
Colin Middleton died after falling from a cliff in the Orkney Islands

A Sheffield man who died after falling from a cliff in Scotland was a ‘fishing fanatic’ who had posted only the previous day saying ‘(I) know my way around a cliff top’.

Colin Middleton fell to his death at Deerness in the Orkney Islands on Thursday.

He had posted the day before about a fishing session at Hoxa, during which he said he caught a number of fish before packing up when the wind became too strong.

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He started the Facebook post: “Now before you all start saying I’m daft or irresponsible, I’m quite fit for a nearly 50 yr old and know my way around a cliff top.”

Members of the Orkney Shore Angling Association, where he frequently posted about his exploits, have paid their respects.

Jim Polson wrote: “Colin was an absolute fishing fanatic who simply loved being in Orkney and planned to retire here with his wife in the future.

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“I only met Colin last year during a fishing competition at Hatston pier and then went fishing with him at Hoxa.

“We kept in touch ever since and had planned to go fishing that very afternoon but he never turned up. RIP Big fella you will be sadly missed.”

Ian Brough wrote: “RIP indeed. Such a sad loss.” 

And Jed Platts commented: “RIP Colin, a very sad loss to his family and all who knew him.”

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Mr Middleton’s body was recovered from the foot of the cliffs after emergency services were called on Thursday afternoon.

Chief Inspector Matt Webb said: "Our thoughts are with Mr Middleton's family and friends at this extremely sad time. "There are no suspicious circumstances and Mr Middleton's death appears to be a tragic accident.

"However, we are continuing to establish the full circumstances and I would be grateful if anyone who has information but has not yet spoken to police gets in touch as soon as they can.

"I would also take the opportunity to thank our partner agencies for their support during this incident."