The mother of a British man who went missing from a beach in Australia said she feels ‘completely numb’.
Hugo Palmer, 20, was reported missing from Shelly Beach, north of Sydney, last week alongside his friend Erwan Ferrieux.
His mother, Tanya McNab, flew to the beach in New South Wales on Sunday to attend a vigil for her son, whose belongings were discovered on Monday by early morning walkers.
Mr Palmer (R) and his friend Mr Ferrieux went missing from the beach in New South Wales (Picture: Instagram)She said Mr Palmer had been living his dream by visiting Australia, but it had ‘only just started’.
‘I’m feeling numb — completely numb. I have been since I heard the news,’ she said.
Mr Palmer, from East Grinstead in East Sussex, and Frenchman Mr Ferrieux arrived in Australia in November. They had been in the Port Macquarie area since last Sunday.
Locals and backpackers joined the mum and other family members for the vigil.
The two men, both 20, had their belongings found on the beach by early morning walkers last Monday (Picture: Instagram)Some of the men’s items were laid on the sand as the vigil took place.
Betsey Drake, who helped organise it, told ABC: ‘We decided as a community we were missing them too, even though we never met them.’
An air and sea search, which included police divers, was launched after the belongings were found.
The pair’s rented car with their personal items in it, including travel documents, has also been found.
But the search was scaled back on Wednesday on experts’ advice, a New South Wales Police spokesman said.
He added, however, that ‘sweeps of the coastline and foreshore will continue over the coming days.’