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Community / Lost surfboard reunited with ‘ecstatic’ owner after drifting hundreds of miles to Shetland

Lee Brogan (left) after being reunited with the surfboard, and Stephanie Riise and Jake Anderson (right) after finding it on a beach in Shetland.

A SURFBOARD which was lost in the sea off the north east coast of England before drifting hundreds of miles north to Shetland has been reunited with its thankful owner.

The lonely surfboard lying on the beach.

A surprised Stephanie Riise and her partner Jake Anderson came across the nine foot Walden surfboard washed up on a beach in Skeld in late December.

Thanks to the power of Facebook, the owner of the surfboard – Lee Brogan – was tracked down.

After his leash snapped he lost the board when out surfing at Runswick Bay, in the north east of England near Whitby, around five weeks before it was discovered in Shetland.

Some ‘as the crow flies’ calculations suggest the surfboard may have travelled around 400 miles before landing ashore in Shetland.

He had posted about the lost surfboard on Facebook on the off chance someone might find it, and it was through this that he was traced.

But he never expected it to have drifted all the way up to Shetland.

After being contacted, Lee – who lives five or ten minutes from Runswick Bay – sent images of himself with the surfboard to prove his identity, and the unusual beach discovery was later dispatched south.

He was reunited with his surfboard earlier this week.

“I was so stoked to finally get it back, I could hardly believe that it’d turned up,” the surfer said.

“I’m especially happy that Stephanie, who found the board, was willing to send it back to me.

“It was looking like a couple of hundred quid for shipping, however the finder knew someone with a van who does courier trips down the UK from Shetland [Joel Friedlander], so for a small fee I’m ecstatic to be back in possession of my baby.”

Lee said the returned surfboard was in “surprisingly good condition considering how far it travelled, to be honest”.

“It needs a few small ding repairs and a bit of a repaint, but other than that it’s fully intact,” he said.

Stephanie, meanwhile, said she and her partner are “so chuffed the board has been reunited with its rightful owner”.

“Seeing Lee so thankful and appreciative has really made it worthwhile,” she said. “It’s certainly been a fine lightsome story in the midst of this ongoing pandemic.”