Body found after Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall appeals for help finding his 'very dearest friend'

The body of a man Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall called his "very dearest friend" has been found in Dorset - the same day the TV chef appealed for help finding him.

He tweeted on Thursday morning to say Nick Fisher, a 63-year-old TV scriptwriter and author, had gone missing after leaving home near Bridport on Tuesday.

Fearnley-Whittingstall said his friend's car was spotted in Dorchester and he may have had some tea in a hotel, but hadn't been seen since.

"It's so unlike Nick to do this and of course we are very worried for his safety," he tweeted - alongside a picture of Mr Fisher.

But hours later, Dorset Police said a body they believe to be Mr Fisher had been found on Thursday morning after "extensive inquires and searches".

A statement said: "While formal identification has not yet taken place, the body is believed to be that of Nick Fisher and his family has been informed.

"The death is not being treated as suspicious and HM Coroner has been notified."

Mr Fisher had won a BAFTA and written episodes of shows such as EastEnders, Casualty, Hustle, New Tricks and Holby City.

He also worked as a guest presenter on the River Cottage and wrote a number of books, including the River Cottage fish cookbook.

Fearnley-Whittingstall paid tribute to his friend on Thursday night.

"He was always full of insight and compassion, which is what made him such a great writer and broadcaster, as well as a brilliant friend," he tweeted.

"Nick was the best person to spend time with, especially on a boat," added the chef.

"We talked about fishing endlessly, but we also talked about life, a subject on which Nick was an expert because he had lived so much of it. I can't believe it's over, but many wonderful memories live on."