Police have released details of the two Brighton who were swept out to sea this morning (Saturday 10 January).
Dan Nicholls, 23, of Florence Road, Brighton, and Freddie Reynolds, 24, of Buckingham Place, Brighton, had been on a night out with friends.
A body recovered from the sea at Saltdean this afternoon is believed to be one of the men, Sussex Police said. It has not yet been formally identified.
The families of the two men, who are feared to have drowned, agreed that their identities could be published.
— Jason Reeve (@JRAperture) January 10, 2015
Sussex Police said that the two men, who were on a night out in the town with other friends, had been swept out to sea near the Palace Pier at about 1am.
The force said: “A body, probably of one of the men swept to sea at Brighton, has been discovered on the beach at Saltdean this afternoon.
“A member of the public found the body at 2.25pm and the body is being recovered from the scene. Formal identification has yet to take place.”
Detective Chief Inspector Carwyn Hughes said: “This is a tragic incident and we are supporting the families involved.
“The body recovered on the beach is likely to be one of the two men and we are doing all we can to find the other with coastguard further involved.
“The two friends had, with three other men, gone to the seafront after a night out with friends when the tragedy happened.”
Extensive searches took place throughout the night. The coastal rescue services, police helicopter and Brighton and Hove City Council seafront officers all took part.
Today Sussex Police specialist search officers have co-ordinated a search of the shoreline with the support of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.
Seventeen members of the Sussex Search and Rescue team have been searching repeatedly from the West Pier to the Saltdean Lido.
A National Police Air Support helicopter also made a sweep of the shore from Rottingdean and out to sea at noon.
In an effort to find and recover the other body, further searches by the Sussex Search and Rescue team are planned to continue tomorrow.
Specially trained officers are supporting the families.
Detective Chief Inspector Hughes said: “Our ongoing investigation has so far revealed that a group of seven friends had gone out that night to celebrate one of them emigrating.
“Initial investigations show that during their night out there had been a dare to stand by the sea, with Dan volunteering.
“Five of the friends went to the seafront and Dan took up the dare and was at the water’s edge when we are told a wave hit him, knocking him off his feet, and he was taken out to sea.
“On seeing this Freddie, with another friend, started to strip and Freddie dived in to rescue Dan but was also swept out.
“Their shocked friends tried to enter the water but were beaten back by the waves.
“Tragically they saw Dan and Freddie together before they lost sight of them and called for the help of emergency services.
“This was a tragic incident.
“The friends had discussed the dare before seeing the ferocity of the waves.
“The sea was gale force nine and very dangerous.
“The dare was to stand near the sea but this was still too close as is evident in what happened. What was a bit of fun had tragic consequences in this case.
“Our thoughts go out to Dan and Freddie’s families and friends at this sad time. We will continue to do all we can to recover the second body.
“I would emphasise that people should keep away from the sea when it is so dangerous.”