The body of a missing man was found in Brighton hours after a major search to find him was called off.

Emergency services scoured the coastline off Brighton beach from 7.15am yesterday (September 24) after reports came in of a man struggling in the sea near the Palace Pier.

Helicopters, lifeboats and even a specialist coastguard aeroplane were called in to help find him, however the operation was stood down at around 3pm.

Later that evening, emergency services were seen on the beach at the bottom of West Street after a body was found.

A spokeswoman for Sussex Police said: “The body of a man was sadly recovered from the sea in Brighton on Sunday night.

“A major search and rescue operation was launched at 7.15am on Sunday following reports of a man in difficulty in the sea east of Brighton Palace Pier.

READ MORE: Search for man reported missing in Brighton sea is stood down

“The body of the 38-year-old man was found near the shoreline on the beach opposite the Odeon Cinema.

“His next of kin have been informed and are receiving support from officers at this time.

“There are no suspicious circumstances and the death has been referred to the coroner.”