Michael Holt: British man dies during charity row across the Atlantic

A British man has died during a charity row across the Atlantic.

Michael Holt, who lived in the Wirral but was originally from Porthmadog in North Wales, set off on his solo rowing challenge from Gran Canaria to Barbados last month.

A statement published on his Facebook page said Mr Holt, 54, had been found dead inside his cabin on Saturday night.

"We have been working tirelessly to get help to Michael over the past four days but have found it incredibly difficult to do so," the statement said.

A fishing vessel made directly for Mr Holt's coordinates after accepting a task from Cape Verde Joint Rescue Coordination Centre.

The statement said Mr Holt had "died doing something he absolutely wanted to do with a passion".

He had rowed over 700 miles of his journey on his boat named Mynadd, a Welsh word with a similar meaning to "will".

Mr Holt said he had chosen the name as he had spent his teenage years growing up in North Wales, and the country and the Welsh language were "close to [his] heart".

He was raising money for two charities, after he was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 1997 and in memory of a friend who took his own life last year.

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His death had come as a "huge shock" to his family and friends, the statement added.

Those who have been following his challenge on social media have been thanked for their "kind words and wishes".

A spokesperson for the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office said: "We are supporting the family of a British man who has died in Cape Verde and are in contact with the local authorities."