Scuba diver Adele Devonshire gave up all hope of finding her camera after it was lost during a dive off St Abbs, but it has been returned, still working, having washed up three years later and 600 miles from the Berwickshire coast.
The ecologist from Surrey was visiting St Abbs in 2013 exploring the marine life off the headland when the clip holding her Fuji camera and its waterproof case broke, lost in the water. Adele hadn’t noticed the camera missing until she returned to the surface and a search of the shoreline proved fruitless.
Cut to present day Gullholmen, a 31 hectare island home to only 90 people off the coast of Sweden, where Lars Mossberg was enjoying his daily stroll and spotted the plastic casing amongst seagrass and shells.
“I don’t know why I looked down at it but I saw something orange,” he said. “I left it for a while when I took it home because I didn’t believe it would work.”
After leaving the camera to dry before opening the case Lars was amazed to be able to turn the camera on without it even needing charging.
“There were 400 to 500 photos, from all different places. I could see the last photo was from around July 2013, and a diving trip, so was amazed it had reached me,” he said.
After some detective work, looking at videos on the camera and hearing the English voices, Lars guessed the camera had been swept along in the current from Britain, and uploaded pictures to the “Lost at Sea” Facebook site in the hope of reuniting it with its owner.
More amazing yet, it took only five hours for word to reach Adele. At 5.30pm Lars uploaded pictures from the camera to the Facebook group, and by 10.30pm it was spotted by a friend of Adele who had been diving with her three years before.
Lars asked Adele for some details of the pictures on the camera to confirm her identity and is now posting the camera back to her.
“I never did buy a new one so I’m really looking forward to getting it back,” said Adele. “It has been on quite the journey.” “To think that it had presumably been bobbing around in the sea for all that time - and still works - is remarkable. It just goes to show the power of the internet and the kindness of people.”