HUMAN remains have been discovered at the bottom of cliffs on Portland.

The body was found by a member of the public in what police described as a ‘remote’ location and, while the identity of the deceased remains unknown, police are not treating the death as suspicious.

A spokesman for Dorset Police said: “At 1pm on Friday, Dorset Police were called by members of the public to Blacknor Fort, Portland, having found what they believed to be human remains.

“Officers attended and the body of a deceased person, believed to be a male, was located in a remote and fairly inaccessible location.

“The body was recovered with the assistance of HM Coastguard.

“The death is not being treated as suspicious although the identity of the deceased is not known at this time.

“The investigation is now in the hands of the coroner.”

A spokesman for Portland Coastguard said they had been made aware of the discovery but the incident was being dealt with by the police.

A nearby resident, who wanted to remain anonymous, said: “There were a lot of police and coastguards who were here after they found the body.

“There has been a couple of incidents in the past of people committing suicide or coastguards having to rescue people from the sea but it’s not a frequent occurrence.”

Portland town mayor Les Ames said he was ‘extremely sorry’ to hear about the discovery of the body on the island.

He said: “I’m extremely sorry and my sympathy goes to the people concerned.

“I’m sorry it’s happened.”

Portland county and borough councillor Paul Kimber said his thoughts were with the family of the deceased.

He said: “It’s very sad and very tragic for the relations, family and friends. It’s a holiday weekend and the family won’t be enjoying their holiday.”

Police have not indicated how long the body may have been at the location.

Borough councillor Sandy West, who represents the Underhill ward, said that if the body had been undiscovered for a period of time, at least the find would bring closure to the family involved.

She said: “My thoughts go out to them, especially around Easter time. Hopefully they will be able to find out who it is.”