THE body of a middle-aged man has been found on the banks of the River Wear.

Police received a report that a man's body had been found on the riverbank at the Fish Quay, Sunderland, at about 7.35am today.

A member of the public reporting seeingf a person lying on mud-banks close to Panns Bank University Accommodation, Sunderland.

Coastguard Officers at Humber Coastguard who requested the launch of Sunderland RNLI’s D Class inshore lifeboat, MyJo, along with their own Coastguard Rescue Team from Sunderland.

The lifeboat launched under the command of Mark Cleminson and quickly located the reported person.

After liaising with police officer at the scene, the body was recovered from the mud-bank and transferred to the lifeboat station at Sunderland Marina where it was handed over to Northumbria Police Officers and paramedics.

Kristina Jameson, Deputy Launching Authority at Sunderland RNLI said: “These types of incident are always difficult for our volunteers to deal with, but it is something which they train for to ensure that the task is carried out in a safe and respectful manner.

"They worked closely with the police officers at the scene to ensure that the correct procedures were followed to allow their investigation to take place once the body was taken ashore."

The body was taken to Sunderland Royal Hospital and enquiries are ongoing to establish the identity of the man and the cause of death.