Walton on Thames
The man's body was found near this stretch of water on Walton-on-ThamesGoogle Maps / Rob Bastin

A man has been arrested after the body of a man with severe head trauma was discovered in the River Thames. Surrey Police launched a murder investigation after human remains were found in a stretch of water in Walton-on-Thames on Thursday 28 July.

Investigators believe the man was fishing in the river before he disappeared as his fishing rod, net and other angling equipment were discovered on the river bank. A post-mortem examination on Friday, 29 July, determined that he died as a result of severe trauma to the head. Police later confirmed that one man had been arrested in relation to the alleged crime.

Investigators have not named the dead man, who may have been struck with an object before falling into the water. Concerns for the man's safety were raised by a relative on Thursday afternoon. When the emergency services arrived in his last-known location, a stack of boxes, believed to be filled with fishing tackle, was spotted abandoned by the river sparking fears he may have fallen into the water.

The body was found at a round 4.45pm after Surrey Fire and Rescue Service conducted a search of the river. The scene along the riverbank, opposite The Weir hotel, was sealed off by detectives shortly afterwards.

Surrey Police Detective Superintendent Adam Hibbert said: "The investigation is still in the early stages and officers are carrying out a number of enquiries to establish the circumstances surrounding this incident.

"A cordon is currently in place while a detailed forensic examination of the scene is carried out. Our thoughts are very much with the family of the victim and family liaison officers are providing support to them at this time. On their behalf, we ask that their privacy is respected."