A NAKED man who ran riot on Brighton Palace Pier for almost six hours has been taken to hospital.

Witnesses reported that he jumped between the rooftops of some of the pier’s rides and cafes before jumping into the water.

He was rescued by RNLI crews, but escaped and climbed back onto the pier.

More than 40 members of the police, RNLI coastguard, ambulance and fire services were occupied for hours as they camped out around the man until the early hours to ensure his safety.

The Argus:

A spokesman for Brighton RNLI said: "A Brighton lifeboat was diverted to assist a man threatening to jump from Brighton Palace Pier.

"On arrival the man had jumped from the pier which resulted in two of our volunteer crew entering the water to assist the gentleman to the safety of our lifeboat. 

"Unfortunately upon reaching the lifeboat the gentleman decided to swim back to the pier where he remained in the stanchions for nearly six hours before the crew managed to talk the man down at 1.15am and bring him safely back to Brighton Marina where he was handed over to South East Coast Ambulance."

The Argus:

The man was then transferred to the care of ambulance crews on the scene, who took him to Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton.

An ambulance service spokesman said the man "did not have any serious injuries".

But a police officer stayed with him in hospital until the early hours. 

A Sussex Police spokesman said: “Police attended Brighton Pier just before 7.25pm yesterday to reports of a man jumping into the sea. 

“Coastguards and ambulance were in attendance and the man was later taken to hospital for medical checks.

The Argus:

“We were at the scene until after 1am, but had an officer at the hospital with him until after 2.30am. There have been no charges at this time.” 

A spokeswoman for the Brighton Pier Group slammed the man’s actions.

She said: “A man spent several hours under the Pier last night until he was rescued by the Coastguard. It does not need to be said that this was incredibly dangerous behaviour.  

“The Pier did not have to be closed and there is no damage.”

RNLI and coastguard services remained in the water around the scene and attempted to coax the man out as he climbed around the metal stanchions underneath the pier.

The Argus:

A Marine and Coastguard Agency spokesman said: “At about 7.20pm yesterday Sussex Police requested HM Coastguard assistance after receiving reports of a male person in the water at Brighton Pier.

“Shoreham Coastguard Rescue Team and three lifeboats from Brighton and Shoreham RNLI were sent to assist the man.

"Just after 1am the man was recovered from the water and was taken into the care of the South East Ambulance Service."